I came here from the Order of the Bow Initiate thread you mentioned this in. The very first thing that I noticed when looking over the class was that, well, it wasn't fun to look at. While the formatting can be a pain in the rear to learn, it's vital to have a good and (to a certain extent) professional-looking post or people will glance at it and say 'this is terrible' and leave again.
Originally Posted by dspeyer
Prerequisites: Spot (5 ranks), Craft (bowmaking) (2 ranks), Point-blank shot, precise shot
Fairly solid. Not entirely sure why Craft (bowmaking) is really necessary. Looks like you're going for a Ranger entry.
I think you misspoke, though, and meant to say
- Skills: Craft (bowmaking) 2 ranks, Spot 5 ranks
- Feats: Point-Blank Shot, Precise Shot
I herd you liek tables...
Hit die: d8
|1||0||2||0||1||vulnerable target +1d8|
|2||0||3||0||2||close combat shot|
|3||1||3||1||3||vulnerable target +2d8|
|5||1||4||1||5||vulnerable target +3d8|
|7||2||5||2||7||vulnerable target +4d8|
|9||3||6||3||9||vulnerable target +5d8|
Class skills: Climb, Craft, Knowledge(arcana, dungineering, nature, religion or the planes), Listen, Ride, Search, Spot, Swim
In other news:
Skill Points per Level:
4 + Intelligence modifier
The order of the bow master's class skills (and the key ability for those skills) are... Climb (Str), Craft (Int), Knowledge (arcana) (Int), Knowledge (Dungeoneering) (Int), Knowledge (Nature) (Int), Knowledge (Religion) (Int), Knowledge (the Planes) (Int), Listen (Wis), Ride (Dex), Search (Int), Spot (Wis), Swim (Str)
|1st||+1||+0||+2||+0||Vulnerable Target +1d8|
|2nd||+2||+0||+3||+0||Close Combat Shot|
|3rd||+3||+1||+3||+1||Vulnerable Target +2d8|
|5th||+5||+1||+4||+1||Vulnerable Target +3d8|
|7th||+7/+2||+2||+5||+2||Vulnerable Target +4d8|
|9th||+9/+4||+3||+6||+3||Vulnerable Target +5d8|
|10th||+10/+5||+3||+7||+3||Extra-Swift Targeting |
Not much to say yet. Here comes the fun part...
Ah! Before I go on, however, you forgot proficiency. While it doesn't seem important, it's a good idea to have, just for completion's sake.
Weapon and Armor Proficiency:
An order of the bow master gains no new proficiency with weapons or armor.
As a swift action, you may find a vulnerable target on your enemy and aim at it. This gives you a damage bonus on the next arrow you shoot at that enemy (if the arrow misses, the bonus is wasted). Usually this arrow will be fired immediately, but if not, the bonus remains usable until you take your eyes of the target or it moves 5 feet. To find the target, you must first make a dc 10 knowledge check for the creature based on its type (humanoids use knowledge(nature) because anatomically they're just another type of animal) and then make a dc 10 spot check to actually see the vulnerable point (remember any circumstance penalties, such as distance). Make the knowledge check once for each enemy, but the spot check each time you use this ability.
Well, first off there's the formatting, but primarily there are the following questions anyone playing the class has:
- What type of ability is this? Looks like (Ex), but I think there's an obscure bit of RAW that says that unlabeled = (Su), which means you can't focus on a target's weak point in an AMF...huh?
- What does 'taking your eyes off the target' mean?
As for the ability itself, I'd advise to drop the Knowledge, Spot and movement thing. Archers are already getting the short end of the stick, adding a bunch of special conditions for using a primary PrC ability...it's not the best of ideas. IMO, you should always be using the signature ability of your PrC if it's this sort of thing, not only after making two checks.
Oh, and technically, this ability doesn't do anything. Be sure to add the table stuff to the text. In this case, I'd add: "The next ranged attack you make deals an extra 1d8 points of damage, increasing by 1d8 every odd level."
close combat shot
Do not take attacks of opportunity for firing a bow.
Cool, but it's lacking the descriptor and a 'proper' explanation, something like "Your mastery of the bow allows you to fire even while twisting and turning to avoid enemy attacks, you no longer provoke attacks of opportunity for making ranged attacks with a bow."
If you have an ability (such as sneak attack) that requires you to be within 30ft, it now functions within 60 ft.
Cool. I'd just say that the range for any range-based ability is increased by 30', though.
Instead of a swift action, you may spend a full-round action choosing your target. If you do, all the d8s of bonus damage roll 8s.
Does this include firing the shot? If so, it's alright, if not...eh. I'd add an attack bonus, something like: "If you, instead of taking a swift action, spend a full-round action choosing your target, you gain an attack bonus equal to half of your class level and the extra damage from your Vulnerable Target* ability is maximized. The ranged attack is made as part of this action."
*Ability names are capitalized, class ones aren't.
Instead of targetting for maximum damage, you may target to inflict a condition. This decision must be made when you perform the targetting. The condition lasts until the target receives magical healing (including su fast healing) or heals naturally to full hit points. You can only target anatomy the creature has.
In some cases, hitting the last of an organ has a greater effect than the previous ones. Also, only a few targets can effectively be hit multiple times.
|last leg||1d8||can only take 5ft crawls||n|
|wings||1d8||lose one maneuverability category, or if already clumsy, become unable to fly||y|
|arms||2d8||-2 stacking penalty to attacks using that arm, including 2-handed weapons||n|
|eyes||3d8||-5 to spot, flat-footed against 1/n of attacks||n|
|ears||3d8||-5 to listen||n|
|intestines||4d8||1d4 con damage||y|
|artery||4d8||1d8 ongoing damage||y|
"you may target to inflict a condition" sounds awkward. Perhaps something like "Instead of [...] you may instead target a specific part of the body for a different effect, based on the body part you target."
I'd reword the next part to say "In some cases, the repeated targeting of a single body part causes an additional effect. Only some body parts can be targeted multiple times."
Another thing, it's unusual to add such a variety of options in a single level. I'd advise giving it from level 1, with new options being 'unlocked' as you gain enough damage to give up for them rather than them all coming at once. Maybe give a bonus feat where you gave this ability so there isn't a dead level.
Instead of a table, I'd make it akin to new Bardic Music or such effects - that is, like this:
Specific Targeting (Ex):
Instead of targeting for maximum damage, you may instead target a specific part of the body for a different effect, based on the body part you target. This decision must be made when you perform the targeting. The effect lasts until the target receives magical healing (including (Su) fast healing) or heals naturally to full hit points. You can only target anatomy the creature has.
In some cases, the repeated targeting of a single body part causes an additional effect. Only some body parts can be targeted multiple times.
You may target the legs (or similar method of locomotion) of a creature. If you do so, you deal 1d8 less extra damage but, if you hit, the target's speed is reduced by 10 feet.
(I'd add saves to some of them, perhaps allowing the further reduction of damage to make the DC higher.)
You may take two swift actions in a round, provided both are used for targetting.
Cool. I'd change the wording to "You may take an additional swift action each round, as long as the second one is used for your Vulnerable Target ability."
A final comment, I'd add the level at which you get each ability to the description. "At level X an order of the bow master can..." "Starting at level X, an order of the bow master's mastery of the bow allows them to..." etc.