Lucky Power 4: Jinxes, the Lucky Defenders

This is the fourth in a series of blogs about a new power source I have developed called “Luck”.

The other blogs in this series are:
Lucky Power 1: A New Power Source
Lucky Power 2: Buffoons, the Lucky Strikers
Lucky Power 3: Mascots, the Lucky Leaders
Lucky Power 4: Jinxes, the Lucky Defenders
Lucky Power 5: Savants, the Lucky Controllers
Lucky Power 6: Hybrids and Multiclassing

In this blog, I will present the third of four classes for the Luck power source: Jinxes, the lucky defenders.

Jinx

“Not in the face!”

CLASS TRAITS
Role: Defender. Your antics always draw fire away from your friends. The more desperately you try to avoid the attacks, the more they seem to find you.
Power Source: Luck. You feel incredibly unlucky, because you are always being targeted. But, in fact you are quite fortunate and always seem to escape permanent injury.
Key Abilities: Charisma, Constitution. Dexterity doesn’t hurt either.

Armor Proficiencies: Cloth, leather, hide; heavy shields, light shields.
Weapon Proficiencies: Simple melee, simple ranged.
Bonus to Defense: +2 to Reflex.

Hit Points at 1st Level: 15 + Constitution Score.
Hit Points per Level Gained: 6 Healing Surges per Day: 9 + Constitution Modifier.
Trained Skills: Acrobatics, Athletics, Endurance. Jinxes do not select additional skills, unless they get one as a result of a racial power (like human) or feat. If so, they may choose any skill in which to be trained. Jinxes who choose a Background that adds a new Skill to their list of Class Skills immediately replace one of their Trained Skills with the new Skill from their Background.

Class features: Jinx’ Luck, Hijinks, Boosts, Flourishes, Jinx Advancement

Although Jinxes have at-will attack powers, they do not use implements. Rather, the enhancement bonuses that would normally be granted by a magic implement are inherent in their powers. However, their powers cannot be used to reduce an enemy below zero hit points. To kill someone, they will have to use a basic attack. For this reason, many jinxes spend their share of treasure on a magic weapon. However, a significant proportion of jinxes spend their entire adventuring career utterly unarmed, relying on their more competent allies to take care of the danger, as they frantically run around the battlefield screaming.

The damage inflicted by the jinx’ knacks should be described as a reduction in luck. The target of the attack should feel “jinxed”. In fact, this sense of foreboding may explain why some of the jinx’ targets attack the jinx.

Like other defenders, jinxes mark their enemies. However, a jinx’ marks are unique in that they allow the marked enemy to target adjacent enemies without penalty, even if the attack does not include the jinx. For this reason, most allies of a jinx know to give their friend a wide berth.

JINX’ LUCK
While you are not wearing heavy armor, you can use your Constitution modifier in place of your Dexterity or Intelligence modifier to determine your AC.

HIJINKS
Jinxes get two class powers: at at-will knack called “Near Jinx” and an at-will knack called “Far Jinx”. All of the other class features of the jinx build off of these attack powers. If a character would be entitled to take an additional at-will power for any reason (such as the human racial ability to take a bonus at-will power), the character instead gets an additional minor boost (see below).

Near Jinx
Jinx Attack Knack 1
Your antics make you a target.
At-Will ♦ Luck
Standard Action ♦ Close burst 1
Target: One enemy in range
Attack: Charisma +1 vs. Will. The jinx also gains an enhancement bonus to the attack roll of one plus an additional one for each five character levels the character has attained.
Hit: 1d8 + Constitution modifier damage and the target is marked until the end of your next turn. If no boost or flourish is added to the attack, apply a power bonus of +3 to the damage inflicted by the attack.
Special: The target incurs no penalty from the mark if it makes a melee or close attack that includes you or an ally adjacent to you.
Level 21: The damage is increased to 2d8 + Constitution modifier damage. If no boost or flourish is added to the attack, apply a power bonus of +5 to the damage inflicted by the attack.
Special: If the target would be reduced to less than 1 hp by the damage inflicted by the attack, the target takes no damage, but still incurs any other effects of the attack.

 

Far Jinx
Jinx Attack Knack 1
Your antics make you a target.
At-Will ♦ Luck
Standard Action ♦ Close burst 5
Target: One non-adjacent enemy in range
Attack: Charisma +1 vs. Will. The jinx also gains an enhancement bonus of +1 to the attack roll for each five character levels the character has attained.
Hit: 1d8 + Constitution modifier damage and the target is marked until the end of your next turn. If no boost or flourish is added to the attack, apply a power bonus of +3 to the damage inflicted by the attack.
Special: The target incurs no penalty from the mark if it makes an area or ranged attack that includes you or an ally adjacent to you.
Level 21: The damage is increased to 2d8 + Constitution modifier damage. If no boost or flourish is added to the attack, apply a power bonus of +5 to the damage inflicted by the attack.
Special: If the target would be reduced to less than 1 hp by the damage inflicted by the attack, the target takes no damage, but still incurs any other effects of the attack.


BOOSTS
Instead of choosing from an array of encounter and daily attack powers, jinxes get minor and major boosts that they apply to their jinx knacks. Jinxes who declare the use of a jinx knack may also declare that one minor or major boost will apply to the power. A minor boost allows the jinx to mark 1 additional enemy per tier and the major boost allows the jinx to mark 2 additional enemies in range per tier. These additional marks only apply if the attack hits the primary target. These additional marks do not incur the damage of the jinx attack knacks, but do suffer all effects that affect the primary target due to the mark. Jinxes get 1 minor boost at 1st, 3rd, 7th, and 13th levels. Minor boosts replenish after a short rest. Jinxes get 1 major boost at 1st, 5th, 9th, and 15th levels. Major boosts replenish after an extended rest.

FLOURISHES
Instead of utilities, jinxes choose from a small selection of “flourishes”. Like boosts, the application of a flourish is announced when the jinx declares the use of a knack. The jinx trades in the ability to mark one or more additional targets in return for imposing an additional status effect on each remaining marked target. Each flourish can be invoked once a day, but if the attack misses, the use of that flourish for the day is not expended. A jinx learns a new flourish at 2nd, 6th, 10th, 12th, 16th, 20th, 22nd, 26th, and 30th levels. Flourishes can be combined with boosts, but no application of a flourish can reduce the number of dice applied in an attack to less than 1. A jinx can choose the same flourish multiple times, which allows the jinx to use that flourish an additional time per day. One flourish can be retrained each time the jinx increases a level, using the retraining rules.

The flourishes from which a jinx may choose are:
Flourish: Distributive
Cost: 1 mark
Roll damage from the knack as normal. Split the damage evenly among all targets you marked.

Flourish: Expansive
Cost: 1 mark
Effect: Increase the size of the burst of your knack by 1.

Flourish: Exposing
Cost: 1 mark
Effect: After resolving the knack, you can make a basic attack against one target you have marked.

Flourish: Unyielding
Cost: 1 mark
Effect: The mark cannot be superseded.

Flourish: Damaging
Cost: 1+ mark
Effect: For each mark spent, increase the damage inflicted by the knack against the primary target by 1d8.

Flourish: Shifty
Cost: 1+ mark
Effect: For each mark spent, shift one square towards one target marked by you.

Flourish: Advantageous
Cost: 2 marks
Effect: While the mark is active, those target grants combat advantage.

Flourish: Disadvantageous
Cost: 2 marks
Effect: While the mark is active, the target cannot gain combat advantage against you or your allies.

Flourish: Lasting
Cost: 2 marks
Effect: The mark lasts until the end of the encounter, you are unconscious or the mark is superseded.

Flourish: Slowing
Cost: 2 marks
Effect: While the mark is active, the targets are slowed.

Flourish: Unerring
Cost: 2 marks
Effect: While the mark is active, you incur no penalties to attack those targets due to concealment, cover, or invisibility.

Flourish: Weakening
Cost: 2 marks
Effect: While the mark is active, the targets are weakened.

Flourish: Attractive
Cost: 2 marks
Effect: While the mark is active, the targets must spend an extra square of movement to enter a square farther from you.

Flourish: Movable
Cost: 2+ mark
Effect: Slide each target 1 square per two marks spent.

Flourish: Confusing
Cost: 3 marks
Effect: One target of your choice makes a basic attack against a target of your choice. You can have the target attack itself.

Flourish: Dazing
Cost: 3 marks
Effect: While the mark is active, the targets are dazed.

Flourish: Denying
Cost: 3 marks
Effect: While the mark is active, the targets cannot recharge powers.

Flourish: Lethal
Cost: 3 marks
Effect: The mark can be reduced to less than 1 hp with the knack. If the target is not reduced to less than 1 hp, you do not lose the use of this flourish, but the cost of the flourish is still applied to the attack. The lethality often takes the form of a freak fatal mishap.

Flourish: Magnetic
Cost: 4 marks
Effect: While the mark is active, the target incurs a penalty to its attack roll against non-adjacent ally of yours equal to 1 plus half the number of squares between you and the ally.

Flourish: Retributive
Cost: 4 marks
Effect: While the mark is active, those targets will incur 5 hp/tier in damage whenever they hit a non-adjacent ally of yours with an attack power.

Flourish: Shielding
Cost: 4 marks
Effect: While the mark is active the damage those targets inflict on your allies is reduced by 5 hp/tier.

Flourish: Stunning
Cost: 6 marks
Effect: While the mark is active, the target is stunned

Flourish: Sustainable
Cost: Special
Effect: Choose one enemy other than the target that has a mark from you that will end at the end of this turn. That mark will last until the end of your next turn. This does not affect the mark you apply to the target. The cost of this flourish is equal to the cost of the flourish being sustained (but never less than 1 mark).

JINX ADVANCEMENT
Jinxes gain the following class features at 11th, 16th, 21st, 24th, and 30th level respectively: Jinx Action: At 11th level, you can use one action point every encounter. You can never have more than one action point, but that action point replenishes after a short rest.

Paragon Hijinks: At 16th Level, once per day, spend all of your remaining minor boosts as a standard action. Until the end of your next turn, whenever an ally you can see is hit by an attack, and you were a potentially valid target of the attack, you may choose to take the effect of the attack as if you were the target and has been hit. You may do this once for each minor boost spent. You must be conscious and not helpless to take the effect of an attack. You cannot choose to spend less than all your remaining minor boosts when you invoke this feature.

Better Lucky than Mobile: At 21st level, once per day, as a minor action, if you have used all your major boosts, you may choose to become immobilized until the end of your next turn. You may also apply a major boost to the next jinx knack you use. This boost must be applied in the encounter in which this class feature is invoked.

Lucky to Be Standing: At 24th level, once per day, when you are hit by an attack that would render you unconscious or helpless (even if due to loss of hp), you may spend a major boost as an immediate interrupt. You are not rendered unconscious or helpless until the end of your next turn.

Epic Hijinks: At 30th Level, once per day, spend all of your remaining major boosts as a standard action. Until the end of the encounter, as an immediate interrupt, when an ally is hit by a melee or ranged attack, you may shift a number of squares equal to double the number of major boosts you spent. Your shift must end in a square occupied by the triggering ally. When you occupy the ally’s square, the ally is pushed one square. You become the target of the triggering attack using the result of the die rolled by the triggering enemy.

FEATS
Jinxes’ feats are preselected. The character gains the benefit of this feat, even if the character would not otherwise qualify for the feat. The feats may be retrained per normal retraining rules. Any race entitled to a bonus feat may choose any feat for which the jinx qualifies. If that feat appears at a higher level on the jinx’s feat list, the jinx may select a new feat upon achieving that level. All feats are from the Players Handbook or Players Handbook 2. The feats that jinxes automatically gain are:

1st: Melee Training (Charisma)
2nd: Toughness
4th: Durable
6th: Jack of All Trades
8th: Timely Respite
10th: Improved Initiative
12th: Paragon Defenses*
14th: Evasion
16th: Mettle
18th: Agile Athlete
20th: Fleet-Footed
22nd: Epic Fortitude
24th: Unfettered Stride
26th: Epic Reflexes
28th: Triumphant Attack
30th: Epic Will
*It is recommended that you retrain this feat to Robust Defenses at 21st level.

Racial Preferences
The races that make the best jinxes include half-elves, hobgoblins, humans, tieflings, and revenants.

THE “AGGRAVATOR” AS A RETROFITTED JINX
If you do not want to play the jinx as a lucky character, but still want the simplicity of play of the class, it is easy to alter the jinx into a psionic class, which I’ve called the “Aggravator”. Make the following changes:

Constitution Primary: Change each instance of “Charisma” to “Constitution”.
Aggravator Flavor: Rename “Jinx” as “Aggravator”, “Hijinks” as “Aggravation”, and “knack” as “discipline”.
Psionic Class: Add the Implement, Psionic, and Psychic keywords to the aggravator’s discipline. Remove the Luck keyword. The discipline now inflicts psychic damage and may result in the death of the target without the need for the Lethal Flourish.
Psionic Implements: The aggravator uses orbs and staffs as implements. The aggravator does not gain the enhancement bonus listed in the description of the at-will power.

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