Author Topic: A Min/Max Challenge  (Read 2491 times)

Offline Stratovarius

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A Min/Max Challenge
« on: September 02, 2017, 03:05:32 AM »
It's a pretty simple one:

Make a Scorpionfolk into a viable party contributor at ECL 16. It's probably impossible, but that's why I'm asking here.

Offline oslecamo

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Re: A Min/Max Challenge
« Reply #1 on: September 02, 2017, 07:26:37 AM »
Assuming your average barbarian/fighter ubercharger/tripper is a "viable party contributor", I don't see much reasons why you couldn't do it with the scorpionfolk too. Plenty of ways to get pounce with feats or items. Losing 4 Bab hurts, but large size, three natural weapons and +8 Str should allow you to pull about the same numbers than the barbarian/fighter.

The biggest weakness is losing 4 HD to LA, in particular HP will be hurting but hey two good saves, Reflex and Will, plus +4 Wis. The +4 Cha along large size opens up an Intimidate build. I'll take the +6 nat armor too since non-casters usually have a pretty hard time boosting their AC.


Offline Skyrock

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Re: A Min/Max Challenge
« Reply #2 on: September 02, 2017, 09:25:33 AM »
Arctic Template could help a tiny bit.

With its three natural attacks, high strength and large size, grappling may be a viable side job just requiring Snatch, still having 4 feats wiggling room.

There's also Leadership to get a companion with actual class levels even if it is just to buff, but that just shows off how good Leadership is even 4 levels behind the curve and has nothing to do with Scorpionfolk.
« Last Edit: September 02, 2017, 09:31:21 AM by Skyrock »

Offline Nifft

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Re: A Min/Max Challenge
« Reply #3 on: September 21, 2017, 02:23:46 AM »
So, 12 racial HD and LA +4 -- at ECL 16.

That's zero class levels.

Can we get level-drained down to 1 RHD, then replace that one RHD wit a class level, and ultimately take a total of 12 class levels instead of having any RHD?

If that's not possible, can we gestalt the RHD with class levels?

Offline Stratovarius

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Re: A Min/Max Challenge
« Reply #4 on: September 21, 2017, 06:42:08 AM »
Nope

Offline Nifft

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Re: A Min/Max Challenge
« Reply #5 on: September 21, 2017, 07:36:39 AM »
LA buyoff at level 12 gives you one class level or LA +1 template to get back to ECL 16.

Since you specify by ECL rather than total XP, the LA buyoff XP are free.

That bit of rule-lawyering may be the optimization ceiling.

What do do with that one level or template?

Offline phaedrusxy

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Re: A Min/Max Challenge
« Reply #6 on: September 21, 2017, 02:27:17 PM »
Feats and items could add a few tob nuggets which might help. Probably focus on grappling.
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Offline awaken_D_M_golem

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Re: A Min/Max Challenge
« Reply #7 on: September 21, 2017, 06:11:13 PM »
RHD don't count as "class levels" for LA Buy-off.  :poke


Ability Focus + other stacks on the poison, won't impact much.
Charging and/or Grapple (2nding) with a dash of ToB.

1 feat weaker version of Sam the Commoner.
Minor Bloodline would fit, the bigger 2 bloodlines technically
wouldn't have gotten to ecl 16 yet (wtf when LAs happen too).
2 flaws of course.

CL of 10 with a 3rd level spell, could get some weird stacking maybe .
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Offline Nifft

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Re: A Min/Max Challenge
« Reply #8 on: September 22, 2017, 02:36:44 AM »
RHD don't count as "class levels" for LA Buy-off.  :poke

Did you think someone suggested that?

You know the monster entry has 12 RHD and LA +4, right?

Online Nanshork

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Re: A Min/Max Challenge
« Reply #9 on: September 22, 2017, 12:23:50 PM »
RHD don't count as "class levels" for LA Buy-off.  :poke

Did you think someone suggested that?

You know the monster entry has 12 RHD and LA +4, right?

I think his point is that the 12 RHD can't be used as levels to buy off the LA.

 Per the SRD, "For instance, a gnoll's level adjustment is +1. When a gnoll character gains his third class level (remember, the gnoll's 2 starting Hit Dice don't count), he can pay an XP cost to reduce his level adjustment to +0".

Offline Keldar

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Re: A Min/Max Challenge
« Reply #10 on: September 23, 2017, 04:19:07 AM »
Buy gear for rest of party.  Die.  Roll new character that doesn't suck like an Umbral Blot.
Meantime do standard ubercharger junk since even a Commoner can rocket tag with that.  Puts the DM in morton's fork, either you kill the yard trash or roll a character that isn't trash too.  ;)

Offline phaedrusxy

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Re: A Min/Max Challenge
« Reply #11 on: September 23, 2017, 11:01:33 AM »
Buy gear for rest of party.  Die.  Roll new character that doesn't suck like an Umbral Blot.
:lol
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Offline Stratovarius

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Re: A Min/Max Challenge
« Reply #12 on: September 23, 2017, 02:12:00 PM »
Buy gear for rest of party.  Die.  Roll new character that doesn't suck like an Umbral Blot.
:lol

This is kind of the response I was expecting (because it's an awful race).  :clap

Offline Keldar

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Re: A Min/Max Challenge
« Reply #13 on: September 25, 2017, 04:03:05 AM »
Buy gear for rest of party.  Die.  Roll new character that doesn't suck like an Umbral Blot.
:lol

This is kind of the response I was expecting (because it's an awful race).  :clap
95% of the ones above 1LA are awful.  WotC was terrified of non-standard races and made awful rules for them and didn't have the brass to revisit them after the half edition.  The existence of Polymorph type abilities just makes them all that much worse.

Offline Stratovarius

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Re: A Min/Max Challenge
« Reply #14 on: September 25, 2017, 09:08:38 AM »
95% of the ones above 1LA are awful.  WotC was terrified of non-standard races and made awful rules for them and didn't have the brass to revisit them after the half edition.  The existence of Polymorph type abilities just makes them all that much worse.

I am aware - I'm fixing a few of them as I go. Because it would be nice to see those races actually playable.

As for the Scorpionfolk and its absurd CR 7/ECL 16, it appears the only minmax option available is to either abuse leadership or ubercharging, and that there really are no other alternatives inside the constraints of the race. Am I correct?
« Last Edit: September 25, 2017, 09:10:52 AM by Stratovarius »

Offline SorO_Lost

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Re: A Min/Max Challenge
« Reply #15 on: September 25, 2017, 10:41:25 AM »
It's a pretty simple one: Make a Scorpionfolk into a viable party contributor at ECL 16. It's probably impossible, but that's why I'm asking here.
I feel like I'd make you're point if I suggested Energy Drain and a bunch of failed Saves.

But at ECL 4, +3 LA after Buy-Off and 1RHD, having an ability bonus of +8/+2/+2/-2/+4/+4, Large Size, three Natural Weapons, AC-Reducing Poison, +10 to "normal" Land Speed, Resist 5, SR 18, +6 AC, and the utility plan of Major Image (not to mention popping mirror image before an ambush), it seems like a very formidable and intelligent brute. Maybe it's lack of HP is a factor to prevent if from replacing entire Classes?
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Offline Keldar

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Re: A Min/Max Challenge
« Reply #16 on: September 26, 2017, 05:25:18 AM »
Or instead of level draining shenanigans that would only fly in the most CO of games; play a centaur.  Gives you the important size and strength, while wasting 10 fewer levels.  You can get the SLAs and scorpion tail through vastly, vastly more useful class levels.  Scorpionfolk is so bad, other bad races mock it and steal its lunch money.

Offline ketaro

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Re: A Min/Max Challenge
« Reply #17 on: September 26, 2017, 07:05:55 AM »
Or instead of level draining shenanigans that would only fly in the most CO of games

Well this is a min/max challenge.....it doesn't really matter what would or wouldn't fly in a hypothetical game run by a hypothetical DM.....

Offline Stratovarius

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Re: A Min/Max Challenge
« Reply #18 on: September 26, 2017, 09:20:00 AM »
It does, however, sidestep the challenge, because you're no longer optimizing a Scorpionfolk - you're optimizing a series of class levels with a small selection of racial abilities and characteristics. It's a method of removing the actual high RHD race from the equation and replacing it with something else.

Offline SorO_Lost

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Re: A Min/Max Challenge
« Reply #19 on: September 26, 2017, 11:14:42 AM »
you're no longer optimizing a Scorpionfolk - you're optimizing a series of class levels with a small selection of racial abilities and characteristics.
Well I didn't actually mention any Class Levels, simply removed the intended-to-balance RHD and let the rest of the Scorpionfolk's Racial Features speak for them selves, and I already called your reaction in my post too.

If I start talking about Power Attack & Shock Trooper you'll just claim charging is broken and not the Scorpionfolk. If I start talking about Staffs & Persisted buffs you'll just claim Spells is broken and not the Scorpionfolk. If I simply give it a Manyfanger Dagger to quadruple it's damage you'll just claim the dagger is broken and not the Scorpionfolk.

You have posted on here for the sole purpose of confirming your idea that RHD/LA is bad , and so you chosen a monster with one of the highest ratios of RHD/LA to Racial Abilities and you have decided on a strict criteria on what's acceptable and not (and anything that works is "not") to ensure you get your proper support for it.

If you're ever going to write that DM's guide to adjusting LA for their campaigns guide you'll have to overcome your limitations.
Would you die if you jumped from my perceived ego to your IQ? - Is 15secs of confirmation bias a goal post worth arguing for? - Ever asked a "victim" what they did to deserve it? - Are the words teen, SJW, & liberal synonyms? - "Only Sith deals in absolutes" contains a misspelled word.