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How broken are you?


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#1 Qwaz

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Posted 31 July 2007 - 08:41 PM

I was unsure where to post this but after steve having one broken character after another in WLD i thought it should go here.

The topic is two-fold really. The classic arguement - to break or not to break? And to tell of your most broken creations if you've had any.

I'm not a fan of broken characters, I don't think you should kill yourself to be amazing at one thing and hang the rest but i am a fan of doing what your party role is, well. That said, there's probably a fine line between the two which i'd rather cross than leave myself under-useful.

In a way i think the way d20 is, encourages you to make the most of your characters potential and those willing to plough through more allowed books...or simply someone versed in core rules in a group not quite so knowledgable may be branded broken when they should be branded effective?

Most broken character so far?
I've just created a 7th level character for an ongoing campaign. The group needed a rogue so i'm a 3rd level rogue pixie (Level adjustment +4). You can look for why if you want but the main reasons are:

Greater invisability (permenently)
Fly speed 60ft (good)
Damage reduction 10/Cold Iron
Spell Resistance 18 (15+class level)
Spell-Like Abilities 1/day (Inc. Polymorph + Dispel Magic!)
Bonus Feat: Dodge
Free Longbow Prof.
+8 Dex, +6 Int, +6 Cha, +4 Wis
Small Size (With a rogue hitting for sneak attack is more important than the non-sneak attack damage you do)
Low-Light Vision

Downside
-4 Str
lose (4d6 + 4xCon) in HP
lose 4x(8+int) in skill points
All the BAB, saves and abilities a rogue 4 lvs higher would have

So worth it? Maybe...a good hit'll kill him but a rogues all about staying out of trouble isn't he? You can still get 10 ranks in all the key skills due to the high int. and with many of your hits being sneak attack hopefully your party won't mind that you're much less effective against undead, plants, constructs...etc

Story-wise Timble (His name) is a married man who lived in the forests with this particular pixie clan. Worked as a "Lifter" to keep the community well stocked with human delicacies. An army from one side of the forest is invading a country on the other and chopping as they go so in an effort to save our home I and some others have been sent to offer our services as ambasadors to the defending humans.
Knowing my DM i just know having a wife is going to bite me in the arse but i didn't want to be the weird real-young, fresh-faced, laughing pixie since he was starting at level 7. I saw him as having some years under his belt and while he's up for a laugh and a prank when it's time to do his job he takes it seriously...Every trap the party blunders into he feels its a little of his home destroyed through his inepptitude. Every arrow that misses it mark might as well have been shot at a pixie.
Of course unless a good reason for him to stay emerges he'll probably retire back to the pixie homeland immediatly after the invading threat is quelled so we'll see.

Next :)
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#2 Mordion

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Posted 01 August 2007 - 01:58 AM

The pixie rogue is a very hard act to follow, so instead of trying to match it with a more perfect monster/class pairing allow me to mention my favorite broken prestige class.

The disciple of Dispater from the Book of Vile Darkness receives a d10 hit die, base attack bonus as a fighter, all saving throws are good (as monk), and 4+int mod skill pts per level.

Starting at 1st level, they can search for and disable traps made largely of metal as a rogue can.

At 4th level all attacks with metal weapons receive +1 to attack and damage, and the threat range is doubled, at 8th the bonus goes up to +2 and the threat range is tripled. These effects explicitly stack with the Improved Critical feat. Using the D&D rules for adding multipliers, this gives you a quadrupled threat range, which would work out to a crit threat on a 13 or better with a longsword, or 9 or better with a scimitar.

Various other abilities are granted at other levels, an ability that works somewhat like a Smite attack, the ability to Summon Erinyes, ability to cast Stoneskin and Iron body once a day, and a rusting grasp ability.

A thoroughly broken prestige class to my mind.

Edit: Actually, it just occured to me, I'm pretty sure improved critical and keen would stack in 3rd ed. which is probably why that special ability stacks with improved crit. So, not quite so broken maybe, but at the least severely bent.
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#3 ENoa4

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Posted 01 August 2007 - 07:11 AM

There was a guy who ran a pixie at as a character over at the world of skell for abou 6-9 months it was very entertaining.

I always DMed myself, rarely ever was a player.
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#4 swj719

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Posted 01 August 2007 - 07:12 AM

hopefully your party won't mind that you're much less effective against undead, plants, constructs...etc

There are feats you can take to fix that problem... At least verses Undead and Constructs...
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#5 swj719

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Posted 01 August 2007 - 07:29 AM

Well, I don't have the sheet in front of me, but I'll try my best...

Shadowrun street samuri. He's been played since before SR3 came out. Never died. I've been allowed to "remake" him once or twice, the biggest being 4th edition (to many changes, so we figured out the eqiv. points, and redid the cyberware).

Here are some highlights:
something along the order of 18 or 19 dice with a firearm if using my right hand. 15 with my left. He could snipe with a pistol. And he only carries one clip of APDS ammo. The rest is gel (stun) rounds.
I regularly get 20+ inititive, with 4 reaction passes.
Recoil reduction that allows me to fire 7 shots from my pistol in a full turn. Without losing dice to recoil. That's 7 shots at my full 18 or 19 dice.
His contact list includes: FastJack, Smiling Bandit, SilveryK, Jane-in-the-Box, and Hestaby.
Enough skills from over the years, and enough attribute increases over the years, to make him mostly self sufficient. He is able to hack (some), Rigger, do demo, do face work, some medical aid (advanced first-aid), and fix anything he owns.
He's met face to face 8 of the Great Dragons. He stays at Hestaby's lodge on occation, when Seattle get's "old". Basicly, he's sort of like Nadia was to Dunk.
He's public told a Paladin (while in Tir Tangere (sp) at a large part held by the Princes, he was Hestaby's "date") that it would be unwaise to continue to bait him. Paladin took a swing, and then needed to buy a new cyberarm. pwning elite elven units? priceless.
has had diner with Miles Lanier. Often.

Basicly, he's what happens when careful planning and YEARS of game-play though most every major campaign gets you if you aren't stud and go LOOK for firefights with lonestar. He's got a full SIN, and a security business that allows him access to weapons and permits.

Recently, I retired the guy. He took a job offer to work at NeoNET.
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#6 centauri

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Posted 01 August 2007 - 01:41 PM

I'm not worried about a character who optimizes to excel at one thing, as that usually leaves them weak in other areas which means the DM can still, with a bit of forethought, provide challenges to that character that require help from other party members. Balance is retained and the game doesn't break.

For me, the game breaks when a character sheds all of its weaknesses and can deal handily with any challenge with scarcely a nod to the other party members. Clerics and Druids are notorious for this. They start out being reasonable in combat and of course are never in need of healing from other characters. Soon they have access to spells and abilities that put them beyond the warrior classes in sheer damage output. Other spells leave them largely immune to reprisals. Still other spells superfluate the sneak's skills. This wouldn't be so bad, but various items and feats mean that the Cleric or Druid (CoD) can be at the top of his or her game all day. The CoD can become a party unto itself, leading some people to coin the term "CoDzilla." Wizards are only slightly less guilty of this.

This, to me, is broken. There are ways to fix it, but they're less obvious than those for an out-of-control warrior. They're also less "common," by which I mean that the presence of such a solution will make it obvious that the DM is crafting encounters to deal with a specific problem.

Thinking back, I don't think Steve's characters were as bad as they could have been. After all, his characters died more than anyone else's, if I remember rightly. I can't think of a broken character I've ever had. My first character had all 18s (and was a Cleric), but so did everyone else in the game so he actually fit in. I've been playing a psion/wilder who seemed pretty broken until I realized that he actually was broken, because I had misunderstood the rules and was stacking his manifester levels inappropriately. I don't think I've ever played anything that was broken and legal, knock on wood.
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#7 swj719

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Posted 01 August 2007 - 01:44 PM

Thinking back, I don't think Steve's characters were as bad as they could have been. After all, his characters died more than anyone else's, if I remember rightly.

His last one made ANYONE NEAR HIM stop fighting.

Tell me how that isn't broken...
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#8 BigJackBrass

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Posted 01 August 2007 - 01:47 PM

His last one made ANYONE NEAR HIM stop fighting.

Tell me how that isn't broken...


My main concern with that is the effect it has on other PCs as well as NPCs. Players really don't like being foiled again and again when they try to act, not to mention the difficulties posed for the poor GM.
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#9 swj719

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Posted 01 August 2007 - 01:48 PM

His last one made ANYONE NEAR HIM stop fighting.

Tell me how that isn't broken...


My main concern with that is the effect it has on other PCs as well as NPCs. Players really don't like being foiled again and again when they try to act, not to mention the difficulties posed for the poor GM.

I feared for his safety once or twice.
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#10 centauri

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Posted 01 August 2007 - 02:51 PM

Tell me how that isn't broken...

Well, his party members could have asked him to stay 20' back. That's a fair request.

I believe it was ruled that affected enemies just sit down. That was unfortunate, because there's no reason that the calmed creatures wouldn't wander right back out of the effect. Then they might try to attack again, but some would flee, spreading word not to approach the strange effect. A clever enemy would then focus on ranged attacks or some other method of avoiding the calm.

Anyway, I didn't say Steve's characters weren't broken. I said they weren't as bad as they could have been. Until his half-dragon got touch of adamantine they still relied on Feylin for door opening, and there were probably traps that probably could have caused him some problems. I'm hoping we'll someday get to see the character sheets for those characters so we can spot other weaknesses that perhaps the World's Largest Dungeon didn't present.

Steve, if you're about, can you tell us how you would have handled the calming aura if it were to come up in a game you were running (or playing in as another character)?
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#11 TheGlen

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Posted 01 August 2007 - 06:45 PM

Silver Age Sentinels.

Magical Animal Summoning level 10 (30pts)
+10 Levels in number summoned (+10pts)
Restriction: Blue Whales Only (-8pts)

50,000 Blue Whales a turn
32pts total.

Leaving me with 118pts left to spend. Got told no by the ref. Later by the game designers.
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#12 swj719

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Posted 01 August 2007 - 10:22 PM

That's pretty broken...
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#13 BigJackBrass

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Posted 01 August 2007 - 11:44 PM

Leaving me with 118pts left to spend. Got told no by the ref. Later by the game designers.


Will this be moving on to the Court of Appeal next? :D
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#14 Thing

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Posted 02 August 2007 - 05:18 AM

Leaving me with 118pts left to spend. Got told no by the ref. Later by the game designers.


Will this be moving on to the Court of Appeal next? :D

That would be a Court of limited Appeal
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#15 centauri

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Posted 02 August 2007 - 07:24 AM

I just realized that the title of this thread refers to Hal's repeated not-quite-a-question to Steve throughout the World's Largest Dungeon.

Well played, sir.
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#16 Balgin

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Posted 02 August 2007 - 09:48 AM

How broken?

Well let me see......

Dwarven defender, dex 14, chain shirt, large shield, combat expertise, defensive fighting (or all out defence) and defensive stance.

That's an ac of 27 before applying magic (31 against giants). I had a +3 chain shirt and a +5 large shield as well (converted over 1st ed character just for a laugh but never bothered playing him in 3rd ed exept for once when I was playing with a group of real heavy duty powergamers who all ended up complaining about how broken my character was).

I don't like powergaming but I can do it when I can be bothered.

So I had an effective ac 26/29/31/33 (plus dodge) character with combat reflexes and hold the line. They were boasting about how big their attack bonuses were and how much damage they could do but they were dropping like flies around me.
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#17 Qwaz

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Posted 02 August 2007 - 01:37 PM

I just realized that the title of this thread refers to Hal's repeated not-quite-a-question to Steve throughout the World's Largest Dungeon.

Well played, sir.


lol, why thankyou :)

Balgin, what class were you before prestiging? Figther?

Centauri, i agree. The calming aura is most excellent vs melee specialist but mix in a couple of ranged figthers and wizards and all hell breaks loose. I think Feylin may have suggested at one point that they send in steve first to "Halve the problem" then they come in to mop up...i thought that would have been great. He could wade peacably into the centre of them and anyone fighting after a few seconds gets peppered with party arrows :lol:
I also agree reguarding weaknesses. I don't aim to build any into a character but adventurers travel as a party for a reason and someone making other feels useless isn't fun for the other players. For example, my pixie rogue will be absolutly up **** creak when someone throws a poison out there. The fort save is low and if the poison does str damage i'll be paralysed before i know it. So until 27k drops in his lap that's one of a few soft spots that the party will cover.
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#18 Balgin

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Posted 02 August 2007 - 02:28 PM

Balgin, what class were you before prestiging? Figther?


Fighter with Whirlwind attack, combat reflex and hold the line :). That prestige class is the only reason I'd ever take the Toughness feat (most pointless feat ever).
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#19 TheGlen

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Posted 03 August 2007 - 12:29 PM

That's pretty broken...


Well, the ability to give everybody in 100' herpes was 110 points. Bit more of a points sink than the Blue Whaler.
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#20 swj719

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Posted 03 August 2007 - 12:37 PM

That's pretty broken...


Well, the ability to give everybody in 100' herpes was 110 points. Bit more of a points sink than the Blue Whaler.

And less deadly...
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