Author Topic: Dirty Trick Handbook Fixes  (Read 9817 times)

Offline PlzBreakMyCampaign

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Dirty Trick Handbook Fixes
« on: February 11, 2013, 02:13:46 AM »
After reviewing the ENTIRE dirty handbook thread, I wrote out fixes to all the dirty tricks. But to list out all the fixes would derail the original and intermediate and new version

I pull out quotes from the original thread without naming the speaker. A simple search through the thread will give the speaker and surrounding context. I do not pretend to do that here.

Note that I am not interested in fixing RAW inconsistencies (Caster Level is ____?), unfixed typos (Swordsage starting skill points anyone?) or the many, many times when 'loose terms' are used (aka its very clear they don't say what they mean, like assuming players are always PHB humanoids and that the referentiable base classes are PHB). The latter is more slippery. See here where the Turn Resistance is listed as 7-HD instead of HD+2. This is usually the same thing - until the wight is advanced...

I am also not interested in what is and is not good gaming practice. Reverse engineering items, splitting the party, custom items, social skills against players, monsters (creatures without LA) given class levels, PvP, gestalt, blah, blah, blah. Work that out along any houserules per each gaming group. What I do here is more or less de facto fixing that any party will have to address. They might chose a more drastic version than what is below but I guaruntee they will nerf things at least as hard as what you will find below. Therefore this thread is a 'standard.'

Here are your DM's fixes to DnD's dirty little secrets. These should be as logical, and consistent as possible, since they are obviously not RAW. Assuming your were a really, really nice DM who wanted to let 'everything goes' what would you do to fix these little RAW problems?

Later I'd appreciate someone digging up the others and then going through the 339 Campaign smashers, and ascended characters threads to provide 'fixes' as well. The first up: Pun-Pun

Manipulate Form (Su) = .... "[A sarrukh] may also choose to make a much more significant alteration, such as converting limbs into tentacles, changing the overall body shape (snake to humanoid, for example), or adding or removing an appendage. Any ability score may be decreased to a minimum of 1 or increased to a maximum equal to the sarrukh's corresponding score. A sarrukh may also grant the target an extraordinary, supernatural, or spell-like ability or remove one from it. The change bestowed takes effect immediately and is permanant. Furthermore, the alterations are automatically passed on to all the creature's offspring when it breeds with another of its unmodified kind."
Fix: remove the above quoted text. So long as the DM understands the 'often bestowed' abilities as the ONLY ones able to be granted, this ability is quite flavorful. The evolution nerfing is only to block hypothetical ascension. It seems very flavorful to allow it if only for future conditional adventuring [thanks The_Mad_Linguist].
Abilities granted:
(click to show/hide)

LOP Trick 0?: The Twice-Betrayer of Shar
Fix: Do not allow persistent metamagic to be applicable to non-personal, non-fixed spells even if other metamagic effects change how a spell can be cast. This is a simple, literal rules interpretation since metamagic effects only change the current casting of a spell and not the general statistics of the spell itself which is what persist references.

LOP trick 1: Beholder Mage qualification here
Fix: Do not allow PAO to count its own changes in the closeness of traits for another form upon a second casting. This essentially bars the 'permanent' category unless you can get there in one casting (I have no problem with the permanent category, I just don't like some kobald becoming the torrasque at level 6).

LOP trick 2: The Perpetual Damage Machine here
Fix: make share pain or glory of the martyr either not stackable (one dispels the other) or make the damage redirection take place a round later thereby making the trick usable but not infinite and only go as far as your Beastland Ferocity / Diehard feat / Boar's Ferocity feat / Shifter Ferocity, etc can last.

LOP trick 3: Attack of the Clones here
Fix: make that stupid clones spell redirect XP costs to you after spell ends and expand the 'magic' restriction to all Ex, Su, and Sp abilities, especially those from class levels. Honestly 'clones' are more broken than cohorts are, so unless you like your party with clones/astral projections/simulacrums/ice assassins of themselves and anything they can think of (efreets for earlier free wishes anyone?) just ban this sucker along with shapechange.

LOP trick 4: The Nasty Gentlemen Found here
Fix: Those thing's share spells is even more borked than a familar. Unlike a familar they don't even have the flavor for it. Just remove it and your fine. For added harshness don't allow things with benefits to work properly if they are supposed to cause ability damage that you are immune to because of simple 3rd level spells and make sure none are 'found' or 'bought' that don't have gp costs (dragmag308 or ff).

LOP trick? #?:Nanobots Conquering D&D
Fix: For animated Objects only allow them to understand attacks (since the spell hard codes this action) where you only designate the object. Monsters with an int score can still be awakened/summoned/created. Usually this will take XP or money or both. In this case only allow intelligent allies to help you beyond the first if they have more total skill check than you do and then only up until they raise your check to their max. I'm open to suggestions but this seemed to be the most common sense and effective solution in case you ever had a player that actually wanted to try to nanobot himself to near ascension.


Tleilaxu_Ghola's Shout out to trick #5: "Save" Game Mechanics (Aka Building a Save Crystal for all you FF fans) = create "save" game points, with a minimal cost of 15 XP. The point allows one to adventure for a day and then reload the save game point if something went awry
Fix: Count a dead party as a on another plane disallowing sending stone use. Remember that spells that monitor condition like status also cease to function upon death. This means that the psicrystal will not know if the master is dead unless told at exactly the moment it pops out of the time stream. Even if you are alive, good luck knowing exactly when that moment is to contact your psi-crystal. Basically a strict DM will only let this work if you are not dead, nor in combat. Also it could be made to purposely backfire...


Besides LoP tricks, these are non-dirty handbook entered brokenness from Destroying the Core

A) Awaken Cheese = To acquire unlimited Hit Dice and Charisma, polymorph into an animal, awakening yourself, then dismissing the polymorph effect. The result is a net increase of 1d3 Charisma and 2 magical beast HD (Miracle it to negate the 24 hour cast time).
Fix: Besides not allowing polymorph, PAO, and shapechange (at all much less) to change your type, multiple castings' benefits shouldn't stack.

B) Unlimited Constitution via Shambling mound = its extraordinary immunity to electricity will grant, temporarily, constitution proportional to the number of times one can deliver electrical damage to the creature.
Fix: Put a cap on con that can be gained equal to is HD. Otherwise you could be a mean DM and use as a pet of a BBEG who purposely buffs it to TPK levels.

C) Free Stuff [and lives] via Astral Projection = Astral projection may be used to bypass the normal limit of a limited-use item's functionality. It also allows for infinite gold RAW.
Fix: This spell may only be cast from the Prime so no extra-dimensional spaces. The items worn and carried by your astral projection self are only 'astral versions' that cannot drain nor use charges and are locked on the astral plane. Though you may travel to other planes from the astral and recieve a corporeal body, if you return to the Prime, the silver cord automatically whips you back through the astral and into your body in the prime, just as if your astral body had died. There that should fix all the shenanigans and only let the spell do what it is intended to do.

D) Generate as much extra time as you can = Casting time stop/ manifesting Temporal Acceleration within a time stop overlaps the spell, reseting the duration.
Fix: Be a grammar Nazi about the FAQ saying the duration is instantaneous outside the timestop. Impose a universal (non-relevistic) time to reality that determines when a spell may overlap with another. By this 'reality clock' the overlap would actually be an attempt after the first making the second casting invalid rather the first. In the case of Temporal Acceleration only the first, probably augmented, manifesting will work so ML is the limit here. Gogo Mind Mage!

E) Ghost Clown Car = Create ghosts of every creature you can find in the game under your control. Have them possess another being under your control (possibly yourself) to give you access to their mental Su and SLA abilities.
Fix: Besides having a rebuke HD control limit, getting up to that number's mental SU and SLAs can be gamebreaking. Make the gain only come when you yourself are possessed and even then only allow a 1 possession to 'take the front' at a time per person limit. Its not very realistic (remember Legion from Luke?) but at least it keeps your campaign still functioning (still I know of no other real life exorcisms that involve more than one demon speaking at a time).

F) Even More Ways to Get Clones = Shapechange into a black pudding then split yourself a bunch.
Fix: Be an evil DM and make the extra black pudding parts hostile NPC monsters with the PC's abilities :) (nothing in the ability says the clones should be under the original's control). Try to be nice enough to allow the PC to recover his lost HP after the party defeats his clones, and shape them back into (dead) black puddings.

G) The H.I.V.E. (http://forums.gleemax.com/wotc_archive/index.php/t-386506) = Use the Vermin Lord's cap ability to create a swarm like no other.
Fix: No need, so long as your interpretation is correct:
(click to show/hide)

Assorted ascension techniques:
As mentioned here Any two Sublime chord, Knight of the Weave, Nar Demonbinder, Mystic Fire Knight Paladin sub, or any other Caster level = levels+previous CL class in the same build lead to NI CL. RAW? They do. Meta-game 'restrictions' on these abilities are still horribly cheesy.
Fix: All similar abilities simply make leaving off the broken part that adds other CLs to makes it normal.

Tainted Sorcerer/Scholar's Tainted Spellcasting (Ex) = NI spellslots weeeee
Remove this ability. You may leave in the free evil spells if you want this to easily stay a +2 PrC...

Offline PlzBreakMyCampaign

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Re: Dirty Trick Handbook Fixes
« Reply #1 on: February 11, 2013, 02:14:17 AM »
1. Candle of Invocation or Shapechange for infinite Wishes to break the economy, game and sanity: Candle of invocation in for djinni wish multiplication. Alternatively Shapechange allows the character to change his form once per round as a free action. Fiend Folio introduces a monster called Zodar that has Wish once per year as a supernatural ability. This means that once per round you can turn into a Zodar as a free action and cast a Wish, which has multiple uses seeing that there now is no experience cost whatsoever. Rinse and repeat
Fix: All abilities that cost XP still do no matter the origin of the cast. This fixes free miracles from Dweomerkeeper too.

2. Genesis lets you set any planar traits you want for your demi-plane = Make it so on your plane, for every 6 seconds (one round) in the material plane 10 hours goes by in your plane.  So, you get into a fight and things aren't going so well.  Maybe you're low on spells.  Maybe the spells you have prepared suck for this fight.  Maybe you aren't as buffed as you want to be.  No problem!  Simply go to your plane, rest for eight hours, memorize your spells, buff yourself to your heart's content, and go back to the fight.  Only one round has gone by in this time.  Plus, if you kept a spell in reserve, you can always do this again if you made a mistake. You could have others craft crap for you at lightning speed if you need.  You could make planar prisons to "assassinate" people through old age.
Fix: The spell version of Genesis should not have the ability to create different 'times,' similar to the psionic version

3. Love's Pain is a spell that makes the love of a person take some damage, no save, unlimited range. Mindrape a Commoner to love the person you want dead. Cast Love's Pain over and over.
Fix: Loves pain needs a standard save and range.

4. Cancer Mage PrC to gets immunity to the negative effects of a diseases while still catching the positive effects.  Follow this up with contracting the disease festering anger (the only explanation in the book involves intense anger for periods of at least a year).  Each day, you will get an ever increaseing bonus to your Str score (+2?), but you will never die from the disease.  A month later, your Str will be +60!  Wait for a year?  It's more than +700!  Wait for over 4,500 days?
Fix: Festering anger needs to only give the positive effect if it successfully lowers your constitution. If that day's con damage is healed, then that day's strength boost is lost.

5. "Shapechange gives spellcasting" [warning LONG AND RULE LAWYERISH]
Fix: ignore that annoying "all unusual abilities are either Ex Su or Sp" line then consider spellcasting in a seperate category. I see this as a simpler solution then adding 'this spell does not grant the ability to cast spells' to a few spells in the alter self, polymorph, and shapechange line of spells. Why all three? This depends on your interpretation of where exactly the spellcasting ability lands in the big three and in what line it appears for various forms. Either will do. Also see the fix to #1

6. The Haunt Shift Trick [LONG AND CONFUSING]
Fix: ... um the hardness and HP and damage-taking rules seem to be conflicting and unclear. Simply put a round/level restriction on the means of possession to solve all those shenanigans.

7. Shadow Conjuration: Major Creation (for Black Lotus Poison) = Major Creation can create Black Lotus Poison, but it's too slow and you have to use up a very expensive dose for it to work.  Shadow Conjuration heightened high enough removes both those difficulties, so now your opponent is standing in a pool of the stuff and dies if they fail their will save to disbelieve.  It's a great AoE killer, and for SCMs it's 100% real whether they pass or fail that save.  By the way, 1 cubic foot of the stuff is around 996 doses, so it's MASSIVE overkill and a great AoE attack
Fix: Remove Lotus poison (honestly what were they thinking?). Im also (eh) about shadow conjuration but its a from a PrC so it can stay...

8: "Kamehame-Hadoken" = Locate City (RoD) + Snowcasting (FB) + Flash Frost (PHB2) + Energy Substitution (electricity) (CAr) + Born Of Three Thunders (CAr) + Explosive Spell (CAr) + Cast Contingency(teleport when unwillingly moved 10ft. or more) before hand + Cast Locate City and apply said metamagic feats in that order = Everything within (caster level) miles makes a reflex save (DC 11+ability mod) or is blown to outside the spell's effect taking (feet moved / 10)d6 damage.
Fix: don't allow diviniation spells to be the target of damage metamagic effects (even after other metamagics) Or perhaps no fix is needed since "Circles are two-dimensional, so they travel no distance to get to the edge" [Thanks Prime32]

9: Sand Shield, Mr Invincible's 2nd trump card = craft walls that appear 500 rounds before you wanted them
Fix: Logic. You can't order something before you wanted it due to causality (at least in the macroscopic realm).

10: Salt Cow, and the cow says "moo *zap* ..." (The other assorted strangely priced items) = Buy a scroll of Flesh to Salt(SS) for 1,125gp and a cow, which would be under 10gp. Cast the spell on the cow. Salt has the value of 10gp per pound. How many pounds does the average cow weigh? 400? 500? Hell if I know but anything over 112lbs is profit.
Fix: Salt doesn't have that ridiculous cost! It should cost 1gp or less per pound at the outside, which makes the profit math not work. Some of the other strangely priced items are ladders and poles which need the prices flipped [Thanks Agita]. I suppose major creation abuse of artificers making precious metals or jewels would fall under this too. Magic-made things aren't sellable so no SLA of true creation for you!

11: The Wire Hanger = Snowcasting(FB), adds the [cold] descriptor + Flash Frost Spell(PHBII) or Energy Substitution(fire) & Blistering Spell (PHBII), adds an extra +2 damage per level of the spell even if the spell don't deal damage + Fell Drain(LM) for coolness + Knowledge of where the target was born + A diamond worth 5,000gp + Cast Hindsight in the target's place of birth and use a Snowcast Energy Substitution(fire) Blistering Fell Drain Detect Magic  = You go back in time and deal 2 damage to the baby, they gain a negative level and die.
Fix: Same as #8, but no need [thank you JaronK]

12:Thrallherd + BoVD Religious sacrifice = infinite Limited Wishes , infinite Dark (evil) Gold and Exp for Item Crafting
Fix: no benefits other than flavor from religious sacrifice. Comon does evil need another boost? Wth WotC?

13: Arseplomancer = Nothing wrong with that logically... but it's sick. Very sick and wrong in so many ways...
Fix: Honestly this one is too gross for me... build all NPCs with adamantium butts or something

14: Starmantle Cloak & Improved Evasion = Take only 50% of incoming attack damage, always.
Fix: Add a line that says the cloak doesn't activate on melee damage... but still kinda cool :)

15: "The 1d2 crusader" = Aura of Chaos (Devoted Spirit 6) + Imbued Healing Feat
Fix: That maneuver needs to have a max iteration it can run. Or for the longer route you can still allow the possibility of an infinite amount of damage but make this very unlikely be refusing to count the maxed die as a roll [Thanks Agita for keeping the flavor]

16: Spellguard ability + Transcend Mortality spell = take the Spellguard of Silverymoon Prestige Class and then cast the Wu Jen spell to insta kill opponents.
Fix: make the Spellgaurd ability give SR and saves to spells used to touch enemies (this should also be understood for that Complete Champion channeling PrC that allows your DMM cohort to give you persist spells). or you could keep more RAI and not allow it on enemies at all, instead counting the ability only on friends similar to #19 [thanks Agita]

17: Callix's version of LOP's infinite damage machine. (Callix do you want to name your monstrousity?)
Fix: Don't allow shared spells to reactivate itself

18: The Shaedling's Shadow Gossimer ability = take a look at how few restrictions there are on it...
Fix: The epic restrictions should still hold for a non-epic PC (in my non-epic games the epic rules simple don't exist, after all there are no epic PCs or NPCs...) Furthermore this is only supposed to reproduce weapons and obviously not unique ones (no free WoL for you!) or artifact weapons [thanks again Agita]. However having any different weapon with any non-epic enchantment is still cool.

19: The Bardic Nuke [STRANGE]
Fix: Someone can only be your friend if they also say they are your friend :)

20: "Gnomes of Wolverines too" = Play an awakened wolverine with Instantaneous Rage + Intimidating Rage + Have Greater Bestow Curse for 1 con + Spam rage N times to spam N demoralize rolls.
Fix: Zero length never trips the demoralize (afterall no rounds means it never happened) Also if you have atleast 1 round this is still a fear affect...

21: Gate allows you to call up uber epic level creatures (infinite HD and CR)
Fix: Don't play epic. If you really have to, institute a spellcraft check depending on the power level (over 9000!) of the creatures you summon.

22: Heward's Handy Haversack + Deck of Many Things = Pick any card you want
Fix: The deck auto-shuffles the drawn cards back in after they are drawn unless they are jokers. Also the artifact has more power than the sack so the sack can't override the artifact (What you want is some way to be a supergenious and logically deduce where the card you want is in the deck :) See my CoDzilla build.)

23: Font of power + Linked Power = 10 levels in metamind and good power selection can give infinite PP
Fix: the metamind ability can't be linked. Whoever reads it like that is a sad, sad person. But see #27

24: The "Unconscious creatures are automatically considered willing"
Fix: Okay just ew, get rid of that damn rule. Yes it means what you think  :fo

25: Troll blooded feat + acid and fire immunity + nonlethal damage immunity = Never take any damage.
Fix = the acid and fire immunity makes that damage a higher priority nonlethal damage that bypasses your immunity or just ban Troll-blooded since it already gets so much hate. :eh

26: Shadow craft mage for pre-epic, epic casting
Fix: don't play epic (again). Otherwise count 10th level spells epic as different than 10th level spells pre-epic.

27: Font of Power + Temporal Reiteration = infinite PP so long as you are able to manifest. Combine this with Timeless Body and you are invincible for as long as you need to little else. Grab quicken power and the ability to not need to eat, sleep, or age and you are invincible FOREVER. [Thanks to Agita for the inspiration]
Fix: Do not allow Temporal reiteration for effects that generate or negate PP. Also I feel sorry to any DM that considers Timeless Body a valid power. It is the only non-ascending ability I can think of that actually beats out RAW Shapechange...

28: Dust of sneezing and choking
Fix: Needs a (weak) DC15 reflex save to hold one's breath.

29: The Shadow Pounce Ability
Fix: Make that ability require a swift action to use (unless you are comfortable with characters pulling 6 full round attacks in a round...)

30: Shun and Embrace the Dark Chaos = (Remember the 504 feats thread from 339)
Fix: No more than 1 legacy weapon and armor and do not count weapon proficiencies as 'shadow feats'. Also I would not allow cohorts to take the XP hit for you (unless you pay for the XP part). As a mean DM I would force a player to use the Variant Deck of Many things rather than these spells (cuz its funnier when they suddenly become half-dragon). Note: feats with dependencies (can't be used for pre-reqs, only when your familiar is within 5', etc) should retain those 'attached strings' to their new feat to avoid NI feats.

31: Distant Shot = Can allow interstellar travel for big and bright enough objects
Fix: Just no to epic feats, period.

32: Age Category Loopholes or Loredrake Kobolds = Dragonwrought Kobalds will be considered great wryms and therefore automatically epic characters if you use the usual, lazy interpretation on creatures age categories and HD advancement.
Fix: Either keep the "normal" age category understandings and throw out epic rules intirely (via DM fiat) or try the more reasoned interpretation...
The More Reasoned Interpretation
(click to show/hide)

33: Time stop on a timeless plain like the Astral Plane = Planes with the timeless trait allow non-instantaneous spell effect durations to never, ever run out, so long as you don't dismiss them or leave the plane. Since time stop has a non-instantaneous duration (regardless of whether it's variable or not), you're in your own little bubble of infinite time until you leave the plane. [Thanks Lycanthromancer]
Fix: Do not allow the timeless trait in your DnD cosmology. If you must, be mean and make infinite time pass in the Prime, making the PC fail any and all quests he should have done. Game over?

34: The Ultra-shifter = changeling wizard substitution levels (Races of Eberron) + High One Warrior-Wizard racial substitution level 5 (Champions of Valour Web Enhancement) + Leadership feat for treating a cohort as his special mount for +2 LA (DMG) = your familiar can now turn into any character four levels below you at will.
Fix: the 'lets you shift your familiar between all its possible forms' should be instead 'lets you shift your familiar between all its possible base familiar forms.' However I would count the Improved Familiar swappage as a base familiar form so long as the feat was actually taken  ;)

35: Roundhouse kicking for [possibly] infinite attacks = [Confusing and Math-ish] (the build would be helpful also please)
Fix: Only allow roundhouse kick to activate a finite number of times. In order to make it non-arbitrary, make it only fire once for each other iteration that you have.

36: White Raven Tactics Abuse = Make your party into a 1 man band. Who needs to learn how to optimize if you can just give your precious turn over the the caster?
Fix: If you don't want to ban it at least put a 1/day limit on this thing. This is THE reason why so many DMs ban an otherwise wonderful splat book.

37: Various Experience Farming Methods = Purposely stay a level or to behind to craft or magic your way into not only having extra goodies but also having extra experience due to the fact that lower-leveled PC's unfairly suck up more XP than the higher level PCs (who probably are the ones doing the heavy lifting)
Fix: Either don't allow the players to hold back like this (and make your life easier) or be more flexible by allowing them to, but still give xp based on what level they should be at given their experience point total. Why thought bottle when being behind on xp or levels is good! Of course ban thought bottle outright anyways.

38: Restoration + Crafting = ni-infinite xp (in groups of up to the largest XP hit you can take). As soon as you level get level drained and fail the save. Then go craft before using Restoration to get back your xp!
Fix: Make restoration give back the xp lost from the level drain only or the lowest needed for your old level, whichever is lower. They tried to CYA by setting it to the minimum from the old level... but just like in programming setting to an absolute value can be tricky (relative changes are usually less buggy in my experience).

39: Amulet of Second Chances Abuse = This item allows redoing your turn as many times as you wish because its time resetting resets its own use - meaning its usable again after your next try. You essentially have total luck manipulation by not 'keeping' your turn until you roll 20's on everything and your enemies roll 1's.
Fix: Obviously this item's "1/day" entry means that it is not supposed to reset itself. This makes it a steal at 40k rather than a game-breaker.

40: Pounce versions stacking: Pouncing Charge maneuver + Psionic Lion's Pounce power + Linked Power + Pounce + Lion's Charge feat = more Multipouncing than shadow pounce... enough said
Fix: Obviously things that give you a mechanically identical ability to pounce and are suspiciously named like 'Lion Charging' are 'pounce' and shouldn't stack. Duh? Technically you could invoke the similiarly named source BS ruling, if you are going for technical rather than common sense.

41: Lightning maces (possibly with aptitude silliness) + Aura of Perfect Order + any number of methods to gain atleast 11-20 crit range = infinite attacks. Congrats the universe explodes.
Fix: The stance and the crit expansion methods are fine. But lightning maces should be banned probably with snap kick also so as to avoid the extra attack build ups.

42: War domain power via Catalogues of Enlightenment for EWP and WF (only costs 1 feat) + DCFS or Psychic Reformation = NI feats
Fix: DCFS is about as dirty as it gets but the problem is that Catalogues of Englightenment can be taken again after it is swapped out. Don't allow that.

43: Cooking with Gas (fly speed+DFA+fly by breath feat = infinite damage at ECL1)
Fix: Make fly by breath a swift, not free action. Done

44: Call of the Twilight Defender Spell = NI hp forever...
Fix: make it give temporary HP. This is just a typo, honestly...

45: Dominant Ideal+Synchronicity Nova = extra standard actions for only 1 pp.
Fix: Substitute Powers should never be allowed on anything remotely useful; its basically like lowering the level of a spell so you can abuse it. Also see D) above for how temporal acceleration should be nerfed. Not sure about the exponential application without a PP recharge setup. Or just ban synchronicity

46: the phasm's borked alter self = turn into ANY not huge, gargantuan or collossal monster. any
Fix: make it have the alter self's 5HD restriction. Keep the whole any type thing.

47: Firre eladrin's (BoED) + Lyric Spell = infinite spells
Fix: The can use bardic music "just as a bard can" but with unlimited uses as a (Su) should explicitly neither provides nor consumes bardic music daily uses. [credit to Benly]

48: Psionic Lion's Charge or Opalescent Glare SpC150 or any other mislabeled instantaneous power that should have a duration = infinite power/spell ability, in this case infinite pounce or gaze attack after just one casting
Fix: change the typo. Spells and powers suffer sloppy editing.

49: Elemental Weird = infinite divinations
Fix: Make them a require the normal 10 minutes. I would say remove Contact Other Plane but that's a drastic measure so long as it can't stack like Augury and Divination. I maintain they simply forgot to stick that in core.

50: Factotum 8 = as many actions as you have feats, enough to make a psion green with envy
Fix: Make Cunning Surge function only once per turn Thralls of demogorgon will still envy you, but c'est la vie.

51: Psy Reformation + Temporary HD = Doc Roc's Dusk Giant quickstep, or a lame version via inspire greatness
Fix: Add a small "check" to the max skill point determination so that if your temporary HD go away, the old skillpoint max is no re-enforced and feats - whether they have been turned into something else by psychic reformation or not - also disappear (similar to the non-RAW attempts at alertness feat shuffling via familiar and DCFS)

52: It has Dweomer in the name - of course its broken. = Poor man's magic immunity. It's the best buff a gish will ever have. No save, SR no non-targeted spell that should one shot a balor? Meh I can take it.
Fix: The "any spells cast at the subject don’t have their usual effect" should be "any spells you cast at the subject don’t have their usual effect." Add "spells cast by another other than the caster have their usual effect," if you want to be clear.

53: The one thing that makes clerics, well... cleric-y? Quick! Give it to the druid! Let's hope he doesn't get ni-infinite spells from it...: Bone Talisman+Divine Siphon=all your level 2 slots become 9th at Druid 20 thanks to bootstrapping. One turn attempt? Fine. Sounds 8th level spell to me, because you really should dip for that CoDzilla. And it fuels divine feats. And there are divine feats which give you more spells!
Fix: Remove that entire option for turning undead. The EClericL equal to CL means he can command your BBEG with only minor CL shenanigans and without a build that makes him a one trick pony. Besides, if your druid already has a domain, now all he'd missing is some more slots and an aura.

54: Base and PrC CL shenanigans (with greater consumptive field for extra lols) = caster levels in the tens of thousands. Its like mini ascension for each of your CL-dependent spells.
All base and casting advancing PrCs give a max of +2 each level, like say Ur Priest. Ban GCF while you are at it.

55: Cannnibalistic Illithid Savants (with greater dopple gangers for extra cheese) = infinite abilities.
Invoke stacking rules so no new abilities are gained. After all you already have the consume x ability you are now getting... Greater Doppleganger needs to not include "abilities" in its consume identity since it is infinite IS in a can.

56: Spell Engine [SpC198] goof + circle magic + 9th level spells = all slots can prepare 9th level spells!
Spell compendium made a linguistic goof here. First it references 'prepared spells' then it says 'empty slots from a spell cast earlier' as if the previous prepared spells entry had referenced 'spell slots' instead, which it should. Now you can only swap equal slots despite free heightens.

57. Imp of Cania: The Greatest Truespeaker. Use at at-will SLA with a save + Mark of Cana to almost ascend. Truenamer is for a damaging ability.
Mark of Cana need to have a cap. Suggested minimum AC of 10. Stacking up to only 10 times for those worried about high-AC characters.

Offline PlzBreakMyCampaign

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Re: Dirty Trick Handbook Fixes
« Reply #2 on: February 11, 2013, 02:14:39 AM »
Mildly Dirty, or, Not broken things you don't want your DM to think is 'fair game'

A) MDJ. Not that you should be doing this anyway, you looter adventurer, but don't break the BBEG's AMF and he won't break your's (and your magic items, and your casting ability...)

B) Turn Undead -> Destroy undead. Turning zombies into dust is fun. Don't try to do more than make his vampire BBEG flee or next game your necropolitan Wizard will meet a double digit cleric before your first HD feat.

C) Belts of Battle. It might be fun to nova every day - until the surprise round monsters start doing it...

D) Custom Items. You want those boots of Psionic's lion charge, huh? Well too bad take that Barb dip or else CL 1 AMFs could become very common...

E) The extra spell / extra slot / extra invocation shouldn't allow for as many as 8th level spells of any list as you have feats * 50%. It should be allowed only once. The Extra Invocation & Infernal Adept feats should only allow 1 per least, lesser, greater tier ... because it just feels cheap.

F) Related to above. Some feats shouldn't be able to be taken more than once. Extra familiar (drag mag 280) is about the only thing I see downright wrong with dragon mags.

G) Open-minded is another example. Int-maxing is hard. This feat taken more than once a level makes a skill monkey useless. To compensate allow it modify that level's class x+int number. If its allowed at first level the don't allow it to stack with itself.

H) Craft Contingent Spell: Should have been further up but I thought everyone knew having the BBEG with over twenty different spells as a free action is a bad idea.

I) Circle Magic's heightened spell effect. The DM has more mages and more time and more characters than you do. Cantrips as spell levels over nine is bad. Similar to DMM+heighten shenanigans, but explicitly works (DMM only negates set costs, not variable ones).

J) Most any Permanent gain for swappable temporary feats: ie shape soulmelds or martial stances. If borrowing the ability costs next to nothing all NPCs in the game world will have it...

K) Psy ref'ing feat prereqs so that a class qualifies for itself or other 'retraining' abuse. Entering early is one thing, but then clearing purposely going about clearing your tracks for a build is another.

L) Black sand in the boots for undead or vipers in the pants for poison healers. Do you really want to go through the pants of your enemies so they don't out-heal you?

M) Any way to permanently altering or sharing (Ex), (Su), or (SLA)s without assuming a form like Ability Rip [SK], Expunge the Supernatural [ToM], Trait Removal [SK], Yak Folk, or the above dopple gangers. You do NOT want your DM (or yourself) using these!

N) Celerity chain. Your DM always wins the game of chicken to decide who has already used up their swift action.

O) Sanctum Spells used outside its sanctum to act as a free metamagic reducer a la easy metamagic/practical metamagic. Maximize is one thing. Chain spell is a whole other ballgame.

P) Echoing Spell used with CL boosters mean you have (extra CL)/4 additional spells PER SLOT (not spell slot level). A wiz20 with 28int goes from 5 9th level spells to 15 9th level spells just with some prayer beads and another CL booster. Granted waiting an hour for them back is a minor inconvenience but refreshing your highest TWICE A DAY with NO optimization is plain broken.

Q) Extract gift forgot 'base' from their assessment of the ability mod of the demon used for the casting. Otherwise it leads to no shenanigans and no one uses it. However if it is (worth it enough to be) used then expect the DM to use it too. Making each thing you fight have more than 25k gp in loot that you don't get now.

R) Mind switch, fusion, magic jar, or any other means of grabbing a new (normally NPC monster) body whilst still staying a PC. If its legal for you to do that then kobolds can do the same thing and only count as their old small CR. Congratulations, you now gain no xp for the infinite hoard of epic monsters that come at you, since after all they should still count as their old selves really. PAO is on the cusp of this but is probably fine without abuse.

S) Template abuse for the few that forget to have CR or LA of other templates carry over. This includes the Effigy and Tauric templates.

Offline PlzBreakMyCampaign

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Re: Dirty Trick Handbook Fixes
« Reply #3 on: February 11, 2013, 02:14:57 AM »
The Fail Bin: (aka not dirty enough)

A) Aptitude kukris on disciple of dispater... abuse of 3.0 stuff doesn't stack the way most think. Besides its not infinite or anything (alone)

B) Warmarge + rainbow servant: the base casting from beholder mage is still dirtier :)

C) Djinn airship = just funny, but there are easier ways to gain faster flight for the party

D) Black-sand = It's a type of sand that does 1d4 negative energy damage to anyone on it or touching it, and you can create it with a Cleric spell (Cleric 3, Sand Domain 2).  The created stuff is temporary, but anyone who dies from it permanently becomes Black Sand, so now you've got a supply of it that you can put in the boots of your undead minions for eternal Fast Healing 1d6.

E) Livewood = a woody material that is still alive when made into a weapon. The Transport Via Plants spell needs something big to work. Go campaign for a toothpick-sized piece of livewood and smuggled it out to turn it into a Fine +1 sizing quarterstaff. Keep it behind your ear. When you need to escape, turn it Colossal and warp to the nearest livewood tree. Use an effects which will let you summon the item to you and resize it. [Thanks Prime32]

F) Prismatic sphere + stone shape (dome) + familiar + improved invisibility + specifically placed ring gates = makes you temporarily very safe. Perhaps more on this later.

G) Revenance + Revivify = "Revenance can be cast on a character that has been dead for 1 round/caster level. It lets them walk around, alive, for 1 minute/level, at which point they die again. You can do this during battle if you have to, or you can do it after battle if you've got the time left, since it's one standard action. When they die again, cast Revivify, which is a True Res as a standard action that can only be cast on something that's been dead for 1 round, and boom. True Res for 1000 gp."

H) Pazuzu should be appropriately RP'd by the DM to kill first and give wishes later. Take a look at that alignment if you don't believe me.

I)
For anyone with a psicrystal: take the Psicrystal Containment feat. Now have your psicrystal take the Wild Talent (or Hidden Talent) and Psionic Meditation feats.

Psicrystal Containment lets you expend your psicrystal's psionic focus instead of your own, and with Wild Talent it can focus itself. Each round, have your psicrystal take a move action to gain psionic focus, then ready an action to gain psionic focus again when it is lost. You now get two free expenditures of your psionic focus per round. :D Works well in conjuction with the psycarnum trick.
Keep in mind this one is powerful, but requires much more broken things to be more than what it is. And what is it? This ones actually cool!

J) (from the fun finds thread) Rapid Wrath [Gh66] doubles the speed of those who carry, rather than wield it for 11,702gp. Obviously your DM shouldn't allow it to work when it is in your pack but hey RAW is silly.

H) Vampire infinite spawn pyramids. Similar to cohort shenanigans but this is actually well understood the most hyper inflated LA in core. If you are the DM, consider reducing the Vampire LA or atleast letting the player get away with some less broken cheese so long as they don't start a wight apocalypse with their spawn. Conversely, if your DM aint giving you jack and insists on the full LA, feel free to have him drowning in spawn.

I) Hive mind creation: You don't actually control them per BoVD.

J) Energy Transformation field by RAW does use up charged items. It's very clear that you are supposed to known and be able to cast any spells it is linked to.

K) Hathran + acorn of far travel = wizard who spontaneously casts any spell he knows no strings attached. Basically you become a non-action abusing, non-fast casting beholder mage. Obviously high-powered but as long as your DM can handle it...

L) Dweomer Of Transference doesn't work on other people's spells. It only references yours and says nothing else to change it. Still great for a mind mage's first level slots though.

M) Alaunghaer's Triptych standard + swift for 3 spells instead of two but must be command or spell-trigger. Balanced for a 5th level spell even if slightly nova-ish

N) Lifebond [LM28] shouldn't be able to be taken at once. Featleech+DCFS'd undead thrallheards with swarmfighting thralls give +how much to saves?

O) Mark of Malbolge [FCII84] for those really worried about infinite OoC healing. It isn't nearly Dread Necro 1 or Crusader 1 though...

Offline PlzBreakMyCampaign

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Re: Dirty Trick Handbook Fixes
« Reply #4 on: February 11, 2013, 02:15:25 AM »
Some insight into my responses to the Book of Heavily debated topics:

The 'new' or 'fascinating' consquences of a trick are the PROs:

I am for everything except (and why)
(click to show/hide)
With notes on
(click to show/hide)

The non-powerful but broken silliness of RAW given in no order:
monk unarmed strike proficiency and totemist natural attack proficiency
Drowning rules
Dragon disciple or Ur-Priest or Survivor quantum states
undead immune to positive energy planes
Deathwatch necessarily being [evil] for good-aligned casters like healers
hiding a tower shield behind itself
illumination rules on source vs observer are backwards
no duration on DN fear aura

Offline zugschef

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Re: Dirty Trick Handbook Fixes
« Reply #5 on: February 11, 2013, 05:09:20 AM »
Belts of Battle. It might be fun to nova every day - until the surprise round monsters start doing it...
you can't activate a bob in the surprise round because you only get a standard action during the surprise round.

as a sidenote: you should erase the surprise round anyway, otherwise you've got the monkey in a barrel exploit.

Offline phaedrusxy

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Re: Dirty Trick Handbook Fixes
« Reply #6 on: February 13, 2013, 11:14:00 AM »
Belts of Battle. It might be fun to nova every day - until the surprise round monsters start doing it...
you can't activate a bob in the surprise round because you only get a standard action during the surprise round.


This doesn't appear to be true.
Quote from: Surprise Round, SRD
In initiative order (highest to lowest), combatants who started the battle aware of their opponents each take a standard action during the surprise round. You can also take free actions during the surprise round.
Quote from: Swift Actions, SRD
You can take a swift action any time you would normally be allowed to take a free action.
I don't see anything that precludes you from using a swift action during the surprise round. In fact, it seems to be explicitly allowed.
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Offline zugschef

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Re: Dirty Trick Handbook Fixes
« Reply #7 on: February 13, 2013, 02:55:22 PM »
oh, my bad then. thanks for pointing that out.

the monkey in a barrel phenomenon is still existent, though.

Offline phaedrusxy

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Re: Dirty Trick Handbook Fixes
« Reply #8 on: February 13, 2013, 07:37:22 PM »
oh, my bad then. thanks for pointing that out.

the monkey in a barrel phenomenon is still existent, though.
I actually thought you might be right till I looked it up. It sure makes the BoB even more crazy powerful than it already was for the price. :P
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Offline zook1shoe

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Re: Dirty Trick Handbook Fixes
« Reply #9 on: May 21, 2014, 03:35:07 AM »
I don't see the tin foil hat or circular charging minor tricks

also, no discussion thread
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Re: Dirty Trick Handbook Fixes
« Reply #10 on: May 21, 2014, 07:35:47 AM »
The tin foil hat only works in the first place if you allow some kind of schrodinger situation where an item counts both as a piece of equipment and an unattended object. But it cannot. So there's only two options:

-Hat is equipment. In this case no matter what size the hat is, it still won't protect you, just as wearing really tick clothing or be clad in closed fullplate doesn't block line of effect.

-Hat is an unattended object. Then it simply falls off.  You didn't equip it or count yourself as carrying it, remember?


Even if you could assume the hat magically worked simultaneously as an equipped item and unattended object, it would only still work if you were standing on a flawlessly flat surface and your hat had been crafted with a flawlessly perfect edge. Otherwise there will be openings left due to the usual uneveness of the ground due to plants/rocks/cracks.

Offline phaedrusxy

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Re: Dirty Trick Handbook Fixes
« Reply #11 on: May 21, 2014, 08:46:49 AM »
Even if you could assume the hat magically worked simultaneously as an equipped item and unattended object, it would only still work if you were standing on a flawlessly flat surface and your hat had been crafted with a flawlessly perfect edge. Otherwise there will be openings left due to the usual uneveness of the ground due to plants/rocks/cracks.
It doesn't matter. Even if your feet are in the AMF, you can still cast spells.
Quote
Should a creature be larger than the area enclosed by the barrier, any part of it that lies outside the barrier is unaffected by the field.

I don't know what you're actually saying with the attended vs. unattended equipment thing. The hat is a hat normally, but inside an AMF it expands to the size of a tent. In both cases, it is sitting on your head. It just happens to be big enough to cover the rest of your body in the AMF.

And if you really don't like the "hat", the caster can instead shrink a tower shield. All they need is something to supply cover to block LoE from the emanation. Even if they have it equipped, they can cast spells without somatic components (which includes all teleportation spells).

I don't think this "trick" actually needs a fix, because it's not really on par with most of the things covered in this handbook, though.
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Offline zook1shoe

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Re: Dirty Trick Handbook Fixes
« Reply #12 on: May 21, 2014, 09:57:31 AM »
I figured it could go in the lowest tier of 'tricks' on here.

I noticed that #8 Locate City bomb needs the fix. Part of the text of the spell implies it is both 3D + burst effect
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