Uhm, since I have a... few... Cohorts, perhaps one could be a Warlock//Chameleon. Too bad artificer is (correctly) considered too high tier... Anyone else note how expensive the Chameleon's Spellbook would have to be? 100gp x Spell Level, with no free spells gained.
Due to crafting costs, if all the encounters are Exactly level appropriate, the crafting cohort will be hard pressed to catch up, since they get a portion of your XP rather than more when they're lower.
Dark Craft (Sacrifice) or distilled joy/liquid pain or whatever might be useful there. Distilled joy is Joy 3, Sor/Wiz 3, whereas liquid pain is Pain 4, Sor/Wiz 4. Just have to figure a way to accelerate the casting of distilled joy...
If the casting time of 1 day counts as 'casting time measured in hours (24h)' then Arcane Thesis + Rapid Spell would reduce the casting time to 1 hour. Otherwise a 4kGP item takes 84 days to create using distilled joy in place of XP, rather than 4 days. That's still 20 castings per 1kgp, if no crafting reducers (Legendary Artisan, Master Artisan) are used.
Necropolitan Human str 8, dex 14 (6pts), con --, int 18 (16pts)(4th, 8th, 12th, 16th), wis 16 (10pts), cha 8
|Class and Level||Feats||Flaws||CL||Special|
|Warlock 1//Ranger 1||Scribe Scroll, Extraordinary Artisan (.75 GP costs), Rapid spell, Able Learner||Noncombatant, Meager Fort.||1 Arc||Least Inv's, E. Blast|
|Warlock 2//Ranger 2||--||--||2 Arc||Det. Mag|
|Warlock 3//Ranger 3||Craft Wondrous Item||--||3 Arc||DR 1/CI|
|Warlock 4//Ranger 4||--||--||4 Arc||Deceive Item|
|Warlock 5//Ranger 3/Chameleon 2 (retrain)||--||--||5 Arc/4 Div||Apt. Foc, B. Feat|
|Warlock 6//Ranger 2/Chameleon 4 (retrain)||Craft Magic Arms and Armor||--||6 Arc/8 Arc or Div||Lesser Inv's, Mimic Class, Abil. Boon +2|
|Warlock 7//Ranger 1/Chameleon 6 (retrain)||--||--||7 Arc/12 Arc or Div||--|
|Warlock 8//Chameleon 8 (retrain)||--||--||16 Arc & Div||F. Resil, Abil. Boon +4, Double Aptitude|
|Warlock 9//Chameleon 9||Craft Wand||--||18 Arc & Div||--|
|Warlock 10//Chameleon 10||--||--||20 Arc & Div||E. res 5, Abil. Boon +6|
|Warlock 11//Chameleon 10/Enlightened Spirit 1||--||--||20 Arc & Div||Greater Inv's, Aura of courage, aura of menace, spirit blast|
|Warlock 12//Chameleon 10/Enlightened Spirit 2||Forge Ring||--||20 Arc & Div||Imbue Item, Eldritch blast +1d6, spirit armor (+1 AC)|
Bonus feat goes to Arcane Thesis as needed, Magical Artisan [X] (.75 all item costs for chosen feat) as needed, Extra Spell (for Scribing Needed Spells) etc.
@ 6th level (As we start), Can craft +2 Weapons and Armor, @7th +4 (next level), @8th +5 (when we're 11th), @9th +6 (When we're 12th)
- 28.125% (9/32) Original Purchase GP (+35gp per unique arcane only spell required to cover the cost of the page it takes in the Boccob's Blessed Book)
- 75% (3d/4000gp) time (but Bumped up by distilled joy castings (@6th, has 2/day, @7th 6/day, @8th maybe 12/day, 9th 15/day, 10th 17/day)
- 3% of Original Price in XP costs (down from 4%). This means that 1 casting of distilled joy covers ~66.66gp.
Crafting times @ 0XP cost. These presume that the Ambrosia can be created the same day as the crafting rather than before it's begun. Otherwise add 3d/4k GP.
@6th (PC 9th, if we need new items in game right away): 30 days/4000gp
In fact, this build eats not 1 but 3
of my Charging cohorts (6th and 2 4ths), and about 150 followers (144 mooks and 6 5th+ Chargers), as there's no room for Leadership and Undead Leadership.
Not complaining, but checking if this trade-off valuable to the Army we're raising. I strongly suspect it is.