Dragon 394 - Aberrant Souls

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IMAGE(http://www.wizards.com/DnD/Globals/Images/Icons/DnDi_Large.png)Dragon 394 - Aberrant Souls
By Galen Mullins and Jim Auwaerter

Those with an aberrant soul take far-realm abominations as their totems to use their otherworldly powers...

IMAGE(http://www.wizards.com/dnd/images/394_aberrant_soul.jpg)
This article had nothing to do with totems as in the implement, but I'm not going to lie: It was pretty awesome anyway. This and the executioner have redeemed what has been a pretty terrible month for the magazines.
Yeah, given the 'totems of the far realms' title, I'd assumed it was about totem implements.  But I'm more than happy to be proven wrong.  This is an EXCELLENT article.  More or less a perfect balance of enjoyable, thought-provoking flavour and (reasonably, I haven't really taken the time to look at it in detail) solid mechanics.

I do find it slightly odd that, unless I'm mistaken, there isn't any content for any of the psionic classes other than the monk, though.  One pp for any psionic or primal class wouldn't have been too hard, surely?

MOAR LIEK THIS PLEEZ WIZZARDS.  Or words to that effect.
Harrying your Prey, the Easy Way: A Hunter's Handbook - the first of what will hopefully be many CharOp efforts on my part. The Blinker - teleport everywhere. An Eladrin Knight/Eldritch Knight. CB != rules source.
I was expecting an article about "totems" the implements, as were many others... I thought that it would be interesting (far realm always is) but of very limited value, as few classes use totems and not even all Druids need them any more.

What we got instead? Good fluff, good options for fleshing out (literally, in some cases) a character with fluff, and awesome crunch. What I really like is how they went out of their way to broaden the applicability of the article by making sure that not only did each Primal class have a PP, but they made the Barbarian one open to multiple classes.

The doubling up of the Seeker and E-Hunter is interesting. I hope that puts to rest the idea that the Seeker is being supplanted by the E-Hunter.

I haven't had a chance to look at all of the PPs in detail, but the Druid one in particular looks awesome.  
...and that's the news from Lake 4th Edition, where the Gnomes are strong, the Half-Orcs are good-looking, and all the PCs are above average.
Probably the best article of the month.

Unless you count the Executioner; but that wasn't a surprise.  I knew this article wasn't going to feature totem implements because I read the description on the Dragon ToC, and was psyched about what making eldritch abominations into totem spirits would mean.  The article FAR exceeded my expectations.

It also shows how O4E and 4Essentials integrate – even look at the Ocular Adept PPath, which requires either the Seeker or the Ranger (Hunter), and adds Psionic options to that bow master class. 

Before posting, why not ask yourself, What Would Wrecan Say?

IMAGE(http://images.onesite.com/community.wizards.com/user/marandahir/thumb/9ac5d970f3a59330212c73baffe4c556.png?v=90000)

A great man once said "If WotC put out boxes full of free money there'd still be people complaining about how it's folded." – Boraxe

DnDi_Large.pngDragon 394
Aberrant Souls: Totem Creatures of the Far Realm

by Galen Mullins and Jim Auwaerter

An aberrant soul forms a unique primal/psionic bond with a creature of the Far Realm.

Talk about this Article here.



* Aegeri, thank you for starting this thread.   I've linked to it as the official discussion thread.  Your original post was close to the format of an official post, as above.
I loved this article.

If I was playing a Deva Wizard|Invoker I might take the shaman paragon path, as it allows me to cast my attacks through my spirit companion.  This in essence turns any range 20 into range 40.
I'm going to join in on the chorus here, and say that while this was not the article I was expecting? I don't care, because it was so good. This is how a Dragon Article should read, with strong flavor, and good mechanics. While there is a place for pure fluff of mint and berry, there is still that satisfying crunch at the end of it. I like this article, and would like to see more of such articles in the future.
57650768 wrote:
Hello Gamers. Look at the hexblade, now back to the slayer, now back to the Hexblade, now BACK to the slayer. Sadly, it isn't the slayer. But if it stopped masquerading as a reskinned WoW Warlock and started using Charop, it could FIGHT like the slayer. Look down, back up. Where are you? You're on a battlefield with the Striker your Striker could strike like. What's in your hand, back at me. I have it. It's an oyster with two magic items you love. Look down, back up, the items are now Astral Diamonds. Anything is possible when you game with Charop. I'm on a dragon.
Probably the only article of the month.



Fixed that for you.

Sorry, but if dragon has become a sercies of "How to Roleplay" articles, so one good article with usable crunch in it doesn't save them.  We used to get several good articles each month, now we're down to one.  Pathetic.
Glad to see an article with some crunch in it, even if it's something I'll never use.
Another day, another three or four entries to my Ignore List.
I have two different questions here.

1. When an article says "Prerequisite: Ranger (hunter) or seeker" does that mean only the build of Ranger from the Essentials, or any Ranger, including the hunter? Because if you go to the Compendium, Hunter is its own class, it doesn't say Ranger on the search results page at all.

2. Is there any reason that this wouldn't be ok for a Ranger (non-hunter but uses a bow as well)?

3. Why didn't they just give the new classes new class names instead of old class (build name) ?



Viva La "what ever version of D&D you are playing right now!"
I am certain it is restricted to Hunter Rangers and Seekers, which makes sense as it seems to be a controllerish path.
Considering that the PPath doesn't say Prerequisites: Ranger, Hunter Fighting Style, OR Seeker but rather says, Prerequisite: Ranger (Hunter) or Seeker, I think it's safe to assume that that PPath is asking for the Hunter subclass of Ranger, rather than the Hunter Ranger build from Martial Power 2.

Technically, they should have listed it as Hunter (Ranger) or Seeker, instead, since that's the format they've been doing in the D&D Insider Character Builder.  But that's a minor issue, and it may have caused confusion between the Hunter Ranger build from Martial Power 2 and the Hunter subclass from Heroes of the Forgotten Kingdoms.

Before posting, why not ask yourself, What Would Wrecan Say?

IMAGE(http://images.onesite.com/community.wizards.com/user/marandahir/thumb/9ac5d970f3a59330212c73baffe4c556.png?v=90000)

A great man once said "If WotC put out boxes full of free money there'd still be people complaining about how it's folded." – Boraxe

This article is super cool. I love the whole flavor of the far realm, tastes like insanity =P. Only thing I'm worried about is wether or not the level 11 feature of the Ocular adept is really up to par. I mean sure it's nice in theory, but I've never met a DM who really cares about ammo or loading. Even if I did I'm sure there's a low level wonderous item that lets you carry some stupid number of arrows/quarrels and reloading as a free action only really matters for multiattack powers (of which the seeker has only a few, and the hunter already reloads free anyhow). I just think it needs another level 11 feature, since it's mostly for flavor with a minor fringe benefit. We've seen paragon paths do this before. Though the flavor is SUPER EFFING COOL, and almost worth a benefit all by itself. As well, the level 16 feature is dubious at best. Hunters already ignore OAs at level 9 (or 10? I forget), and as a seeker if you're in melee you're probably already dead, unless you have your "get out of jail free"  class feature unspent. The powers are awesome though.
This article is super cool. I love the whole flavor of the far realm, tastes like insanity =P. Only thing I'm worried about is wether or not the level 11 feature of the Ocular adept is really up to par. I mean sure it's nice in theory, but I've never met a DM who really cares about ammo or loading. Even if I did I'm sure there's a low level wonderous item that lets you carry some stupid number of arrows/quarrels and reloading as a free action only really matters for multiattack powers (of which the seeker has only a few, and the hunter already reloads free anyhow). I just think it needs another level 11 feature, since it's mostly for flavor with a minor fringe benefit. We've seen paragon paths do this before. Though the flavor is SUPER EFFING COOL, and almost worth a benefit all by itself. As well, the level 16 feature is dubious at best. Hunters already ignore OAs at level 9 (or 10? I forget), and as a seeker if you're in melee you're probably already dead, unless you have your "get out of jail free"  class feature unspent. The powers are awesome though.



The Ocular Adept's level 11 feature comes in handy for seekers who want to go for a Superior Crossbow. Unlike the hunter class, seekers can't reload crossbows as a free action on their own. Spending a minor action every round to reload your crossbow gets in the way of using lots of powers (such as the "shift as a minor action" class feature). The wondrous item for free arrows that you're thinking of is an Endless Quiver, and it's a level 9 item. I'll grant that most DMs don't worry too much about the arrows, but it's still nice to have.

For the seeker, getting perfect OA avoidance in any fashion is great. The only method they had before was a specific leather armor enchantment. For both classes, the ability to use your hands for something other than holding onto the bow or crossbow gives them a few options, such as taking Shield Proficiency and wielding a light shield.

Horrible Article, I don't know why you even bothered.  So that's what you were working on in the middle of our game!  Well played sir, well played.

I think I had mentioned in some other thread that I love insanity fluff, and some of the features are downright powerful like ... wait, they changed the Formless Predator 16th level feature.  I was actually really looking forward to making a hybrid that had a Reach 5 At-Will MBA that immobilized, damn them.

@tehsquirrely: Ocular Adept is going to be a favorite PP for the CharOp boards once they realize it's potential, I'd bet some of them already have something in the works.  There's a LOT you can optimize with not having to wield your ranged weapon in your hands and Free Action loading.  It's really not limited to just Seekers and Hunters, several other classes have good reason to MC Seeker for RBA powers already (Invoker, Sorcerer) Just as an interesting example: Artificer with a Superior Crossbow can take this PP and effectively save a feat from having to take Crossbow Caster if they want, Yeah that's right, I'm wielding a 2h Crossbow, a Dancing Fullblade, a Longsword, a Staff, and my Holy Symbol.  That's 8 Hands worth, Boo Yah!
"Invokers are probably better round after round but Wizard dailies are devastating. Actually, devastating is too light a word. Wizard daily powers are soul crushing, encounter ending, havoc causing pieces of awesome." -AirPower25 Sear the Flesh, Purify the Soul; Harden the Heart, and Improve the Mind; Born of Blood, but Forged by Fire; The MECH warrior reaches perfection.
I was one of the people complaining about the recent lack of crunch and I join the chorus in saying that this was a very good article with useful paragon paths for multiple classes.
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