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-   -   Making the Arcane Archer Not Suck (http://www.myth-weavers.com/showthread.php?t=145663)

Greyfeld Sep 21 '11 12:12am

Making the Arcane Archer Not Suck
 
The Arcane Archer came up in another thread. As a prestige class that's become sad and pathetic since the update from 3.0 to 3.5, I feel sorry for it, and decided I wanted to see if I could give it back some of the kick it used to have. So, for your perusal, my updated Arcane Archer.


Requirements
Base Attack Bonus: +6
Feats: Point Blank Shot, Precise Shot
Spells: Must be able to cast spells of at least 1st level.

Level
BAB
Saves
Class Features
Spellcasting
1
+1
+0/+2/+2
Enhance Arrow +1
--
2
+2
+0/+3/+3
Imbue Arrow
+1 Existing Spellcasting Class
3
+3
+1/+3/+3
Enhance Arrow +2
+1 Existing Spellcasting Class
4
+4
+1/+4/+4
Seeker Arrows
+1 Existing Spellcasting Class
5
+5
+1/+4/+4
Enhance Arrow +3
+1 Existing Spellcasting Class
6
+6
+2/+5/+5
Split Arrow
--
7
+7
+2/+5/+5
Enhance Arrow +4
+1 Existing Spellcasting Class
8
+8
+2/+6/+6
Arrow of Death
+1 Existing Spellcasting Class
9
+9
+3/+6/+6
Enhance Arrow +5
+1 Existing Spellcasting Class
10
+10
+3/+7/+7
Improved Imbue Arrow
+1 Existing Spellcasting Class

______________________________________________________-
Class Skills: Balance, Concentration, Craft, Handle Animal, Hide, Jump, Knowledge (Arcana), Knowledge (Religion), Knowledge (Psionics), Knowledge (Nature), Listen, Move Silently, Profession, Ride, Search, Spellcraft, Spot, Tumble
Skill Points per level: 4 + Intelligence modifier
Hit Dice: D6

Spellcasting - At every level except levels 1 and 6, the character gains new spells per day (and spells known, if applicable) as if he had also gained a level in whatever spellcasting class he belonged to before he added the prestige class level. He does not, however, gain any other benefit a character of that class would have gained. If a character had more than one spellcasting class before he became an arcane archer, he must decide to which class he adds each level of arcane archer for the purpose of determining spells per day and spells known.

Enhance Arrow - At 1st level, every nonmagical arrow an arcane archer nocks and lets fly becomes magical, gaining a +1 enhancement bonus. Unlike magic weapons created by normal means, the archer need not spend experience points or gold pieces to accomplish this task. However, an archer’s magic arrows only function for him. For every two levels the character advances past 1st level in the prestige class, the magic arrows she creates gain +1 greater potency (+1 at 1st level, +2 at 3rd level, +3 at 5th level, +4 at 7th level, and +5 at 9th level). The enhancement bonus granted by this ability stacks with the enhancement bonus granted by a magical or psionic weapon.

Imbue Arrow - At second level, an arcane archer can use a standard action to cast any area or touch spell he knows and deliver the spell through an arrow with a ranged attack. Casting a spell in this manner does not provoke an attack of opportunity, though firing the arrow still does. The spell must have a casting time of 1 standard action or less. When an arrow imbued with an area spell is fired, the spell's area is centered on where the arrow lands, even if the spell could normally be centered only on the caster. If an attack made with an imbued arrow holding a touch spell is successful, the attack deals damage normally, then the effect of the spell is resolved.

This ability allows the archer to use the bow's range rather than the spell's range. It takes a standard action to cast the spell and fire the arrow. The arrow must be fired in the round the spell is cast, or the spell is wasted.

Seeker Arrows - At fourth level, an arcane archer's arrows negate cover and concealment. The archer can launch his arrows at a target known to her within range, and the arrows travel to the target, even around corners. Only an unavoidable obstacle or the limit of the arrow's range prevents the arrows' flight.

Split Arrows - At 6th level, an arcane archer's arrows multiply in mid-air. Each arrow shot by the archer splits into an identical arrow, with the enhancements. This splitting effect does not duplicate the effects of Imbue Arrow or any similar effects that impart spells onto your arrows. Each new missile strikes the same target as the original it was split from, but uses a separate attack roll.

Arrow of Death - At 8th level, an arcane archer can create an arrow of death that forces the target, if damaged by the arrow’s attack, to make a DC 15 + 1/2 Arcane Archer level + 1/2 BAB Fortitude save or be slain immediately. It takes one day to make an arrow of death, and the arrow only functions for the arcane archer who created it. The arrow of death lasts no longer than one year, and the archer can only have one such arrow in existence at a time. An Arrow of Death may duplicated by the Split Arrows class feature, or any similar effect.

Improved Imbue Arrow - At 10th level, an arcane archer may imbue multiple arrows with a single touch spell he knows. Casting a spell in this manner is a swift action and does not provoke an attack of opportunity, though firing the arrows still do. The spell must have a casting time of 1 standard action or less. The spell remains charged on the archer's hand, imbuing each arrow he shoots until the beginning of his next turn, whereupon the energies will dissipate. If an attack made with an imbued arrow holding a touch spell is successful, the attack deals damage normally, then the effect of the spell is resolved.

This ability allows the archer to use the bow's range rather than the spell's range. The spell held with this ability may not be cast as a normal spell, and may only be cast by firing arrows imbued with the energy. Arrows enhanced by this ability do not impart their spell effect onto duplicate arrows that are created through the Split Arrows Arcane Archer ability, or any similar effect.


TanaNari Sep 21 '11 12:32am

Not bad. I'd feel the need to include that the seeker will also ignore that penalty to shooting a target when it's in melee with your allies. And negate such things as the attacker being unable to actually see the target (invisible, blindness, etc) so long as the archer can still sense the target via other means, and identify the correct location (via really good listen checks, detect magic, or what have you).

Also- is a fort. save really the one the archer needs? Most of its abilities are focussed on distance attacks. Reflex and Will are usually what keep you alive at range.

Include an option for the archer, as a full action, to take their move action and attack with no penalties. I think there's a feat for that somewhere. At higher levels, have this include movement that normally wouldn't allow such things- like swimming or spiderclimb. Since it's an elven focussed class and I really like the idea of elven wilderness surpremacy, and that would give this class that feature.

Greyfeld Sep 21 '11 12:39am

Quote:

Originally Posted by TanaNari (Post 4807977)
Not bad. I'd feel the need to include that the seeker will also ignore that penalty to shooting a target when it's in melee with your allies.

Since Precise Shot is a requirement for the class, adding that to the ability would be redundant.

Quote:

And negate such things as the attacker being unable to actually see the target (invisible, blindness, etc) so long as the archer can still sense the target via other means, and identify the correct location (via really good listen checks, detect magic, or what have you).
Doesn't a lot of that fall under the concealment rules? I'm not sure, so feel free to correct me.

Quote:

Also- is a fort. save really the one the archer needs? Most of its abilities are focussed on distance attacks. Reflex and Will are usually what keep you alive at range.
I thought about changing Fort to Will, but I wanted to see if anybody mentioned it before making the change. As it stands, those are the saves that are currently listed for the official Arcane Archer class.

Quote:

Include an option for the archer, as a full action, to take their move action and attack with no penalties. I think there's a feat for that somewhere.
Unlike melee combatants, it's not difficult for archers to manage a full attack. And if they absolutely need to move, Imbue Arrow is still available to pop off a damaging shot.

And the feats you're thinking of are Manyshot and Greater Manyshot.

Quote:

ASince it's an elven focussed class and I really like the idea of elven wilderness surpremacy, and that would give this class that feature.
This version is no longer an elf-only class. I felt the racial requirement was too limiting, so I removed it.

SageBahamut Sep 21 '11 12:43am

Looks better than the original, that's for sure.
I've spoilerblocked my breakdown, so if you feel like sitting through my ramblings, feel free, and if you can't be arsed it's not forced upon you.


TanaNari Sep 21 '11 12:46am

1- Right. You can see how often I play archers.

2- For the most part. But this is D&D. Do *not* leave room between RAI and RAW if avoidable. Specify. Specify like a lawyer.

3- Eh. We'll see what others think. I still don't feel fort is the useful feat for them.

4- I know. But it'd be nice to have the "run and shoot" option.

5- Right. It's not elf-only (and it shouldn't be). But still is a cool feature that fits in with the elven heritage of the class.

Voxanadu Sep 21 '11 1:05am

I find myself agreeing entirely with SageBahamut's critique.

Especially in regards to the fort and will saves.

Also, in regards to imbue arrow.. what about meta-magic feats?

SageBahamut Sep 21 '11 1:09am

Vox - What about them? The ability doesn't seem to be limited by spell level. Doesn't comment on them either way. I imagine imbuing a Widened spell would be sort of silly. But... what's your question?

TanaNari Sep 21 '11 1:12am

Here's a suggestion on the spit/imbue effect (like the death arrow). "If the enchantment effect on an arrow requires a savings throw, the target only makes one save and applies it to the effect of both arrows."

That'll stop abuses of a lot more than just that little death arrow. There's a lot of "save vs suck/death" out there. Forcing a target to make two of them per hit is just abusive.

Voxanadu Sep 21 '11 1:14am

Well.. I can't think of anything off the top of my that the meta-magic would do to specifically break the ability.
However, I was curious if anyone looked into it.

Greyfeld Sep 21 '11 1:23am

Responses in blue. Please keep in mind that these are just my thoughts, and are not meant as a personal attack against anybody's opinions.



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