3.5 Animal Companion Question and Share Spells

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NECRO and EDIT: I'm just necro'ing this old thread of mine because it was about Animal Companions and I have another question about them. 


New question: It's in regards to all animal companions, but is best asked with a simple example.

The Wolf has the attack Bite +3. 

Does it get that +3 bonus, its BAB and its STR bonus to its attack roll?

Or does that +3 represent its BAB? That's the listing for a lvl. 1 Wolf, who if used as an Animal Companion wouldn't have a BAB of +3 it'd be +0.

Thanks!  
A. Yes, if your animal companion moves more than five feet away from you it loses the Bull's Strength buff.

B. That should work, but to make things easier you should be permited to move both you and the companion simultaneously just to ensure you're able to follow the same path. If there's something in either of your pathes that would cause your companion to stray more than five feet away, then it loses the buff.

C. None that I know of, the duration of such spells is defined as instantaneous in the spell description, so you should have that information with your character when you cast the spell anyway. An example is any of the Cure spells you might cast on yourself.
D) Look into the Companion Spellbond feat. It increases the range to 30'.
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56788208 wrote:
I do, however, have one last lesson on this subject. That last one? The only build in this post that can one-shot average opponents[by dealing twice as much damage as they have HP? I would argue that it is not optimized. Why isn't it optimized? Because it's overkill. Overkill is NOT optimizing. This means that there are portions of this build dedicated to damage which can safely be removed and thrown elsewhere. For example, you probably don't need both Leap Attack AND Headlong Rush at the same time. You could pick up Extra Rage feats for stamina, feats to support AoO effects, feats that work towards potential prestige classes, and so on. However, you could also shift our ability scores around somewhat. I mean, if you're getting results like that with 16 starting Strength, maybe you can lower it to 14, and free up four points to spend somewhere else - perhaps back into Charisma, giving you some oomph for Intimidating Rage or Imperious Command if you want. You can continue to tune this until it deals "enough" damage - and that "enough" does not need to be "100%". It could easily be, say, 80% (leaving the rest to the team), if your DM is the sort who would ban one-hit killers.
Tempest_Stormwind on Character Optimization
So when do you think Bachmann will be saying she met a mother the previous night that had a son who got a blood transfusion using a gay guy's blood, and now the son is retardedly gay?
When she meets CJ's mom?
Resident Pithed-Off Dragon Poon Slayer of the House of Trolls
I'd take that "animal companion moves more that 5' away" to simply mean that it needs to move away.  In my opinion as long at it always ends its turn next to its Druid those Shared Spells should remain active.  The reason I'd do it is specifically the reason you suggest; a "round" may be six seconds but while each character acts at a distict part of the round they are also considered to be acting at the same time.  Without that "leap of logic" the ONLY way for a druid to stay within 5' of his companion and move any real distance would be to use the companion as a mount.  I guess you could 'leap frog' each other to stay within 5' and maybe make creative use of Ready/Delay but if one moves and then the other moves right beside the first they two should be considered to be moving together.
 
Thanks for the clarification, everyone. 

NeueRegal, that's a handy little database. After looking through the instantaneous spells, it seems like Share Spells is really only intended to be used with Cure spells, as most of the other instantaneous spells have deal damage or have some negative effect.  
Not all instantaneous spells deal damage or have some other negative effect.  It's just that few of them a 'buff' spells.  When looking at an instantaneous spell it's a "here and done" type of effect that really doesn't leave any magic behind when it is done.
 
No, I know there isn't going to be a lot of buff spells here. But I searched the Instantaneous Druid spells in that database NeueRegal linked to (great resouce!) and most are damage spells (if not a healing spell). Here's a list of those up to 5th level: http://imarvintpa.com/dndlive/SearchList.php

Of course, as I say that I think to myself, "What do I really want -- the majority of spells are either going to heal or do damage to an opponent." I guess I was just hoping for more flexibility with this ability. Stupid Druids aren't good enough!

I suppose other Instantaneous options include spells like Dispel.  
You must have missed my last post.

Look up the feat Companion Spellbond feat: it increases the range of separation from 5' to 30'.
"Today's headlines and history's judgment are rarely the same. If you are too attentive to the former, you will most certainly not do the hard work of securing the latter." -Condoleezza Rice "My fellow Americans... I've just signed legislation that will outlaw Russia forever. Bombing begins in five minutes." - Ronald Reagan This user has been banned from you by the letters "O-R-C" and the numbers "2, 3, 4, and 6"
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56788208 wrote:
I do, however, have one last lesson on this subject. That last one? The only build in this post that can one-shot average opponents[by dealing twice as much damage as they have HP? I would argue that it is not optimized. Why isn't it optimized? Because it's overkill. Overkill is NOT optimizing. This means that there are portions of this build dedicated to damage which can safely be removed and thrown elsewhere. For example, you probably don't need both Leap Attack AND Headlong Rush at the same time. You could pick up Extra Rage feats for stamina, feats to support AoO effects, feats that work towards potential prestige classes, and so on. However, you could also shift our ability scores around somewhat. I mean, if you're getting results like that with 16 starting Strength, maybe you can lower it to 14, and free up four points to spend somewhere else - perhaps back into Charisma, giving you some oomph for Intimidating Rage or Imperious Command if you want. You can continue to tune this until it deals "enough" damage - and that "enough" does not need to be "100%". It could easily be, say, 80% (leaving the rest to the team), if your DM is the sort who would ban one-hit killers.
Tempest_Stormwind on Character Optimization
So when do you think Bachmann will be saying she met a mother the previous night that had a son who got a blood transfusion using a gay guy's blood, and now the son is retardedly gay?
When she meets CJ's mom?
Resident Pithed-Off Dragon Poon Slayer of the House of Trolls
Share Spells appears to be designed for buffs, but it is awkward. Getting double for your CLW is a nice trick if you're both injured, but really you either want to be staying close together (no flanking, unfortunately, but still), using your AC as a mount (a possibility, particularly for Small druids like Goblins) or get Companion Spellbond.

Note a nuance of Share Spells is that you can cast Personal spells on your AC, as if it were you. These don't end because they're not shared; it's a sort of extra ability. This means you can use several powerful, normally-self-only buffs on it. A nice trick is if you are, say, a Wizard/Druid (dip a level of Conjurer with the Conjurer variants in UA to boost your summoning, say), you can cast Enlarge Person on your AC even though it normally only targets people - for example. A bit of a niche use, mind.
I may end up going Companion Spellbound as my lvl. 3 feat instead of Extend Spell. Level 1 I took Spell Focus and Augment Summoning, and while we're core books only, I'm sure my DM would let me make the exception. It's not like that's a wildly powerful feat or something distant from the types of feats found in the PHB. 
It's really the only non-Core option a Druid really needs... Other than more spells & more animals to turn into.
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56788208 wrote:
I do, however, have one last lesson on this subject. That last one? The only build in this post that can one-shot average opponents[by dealing twice as much damage as they have HP? I would argue that it is not optimized. Why isn't it optimized? Because it's overkill. Overkill is NOT optimizing. This means that there are portions of this build dedicated to damage which can safely be removed and thrown elsewhere. For example, you probably don't need both Leap Attack AND Headlong Rush at the same time. You could pick up Extra Rage feats for stamina, feats to support AoO effects, feats that work towards potential prestige classes, and so on. However, you could also shift our ability scores around somewhat. I mean, if you're getting results like that with 16 starting Strength, maybe you can lower it to 14, and free up four points to spend somewhere else - perhaps back into Charisma, giving you some oomph for Intimidating Rage or Imperious Command if you want. You can continue to tune this until it deals "enough" damage - and that "enough" does not need to be "100%". It could easily be, say, 80% (leaving the rest to the team), if your DM is the sort who would ban one-hit killers.
Tempest_Stormwind on Character Optimization
So when do you think Bachmann will be saying she met a mother the previous night that had a son who got a blood transfusion using a gay guy's blood, and now the son is retardedly gay?
When she meets CJ's mom?
Resident Pithed-Off Dragon Poon Slayer of the House of Trolls
Note a nuance of Share Spells is that you can cast Personal spells on your AC, as if it were you. These don't end because they're not shared; it's a sort of extra ability. This means you can use several powerful, normally-self-only buffs on it. A nice trick is if you are, say, a Wizard/Druid (dip a level of Conjurer with the Conjurer variants in UA to boost your summoning, say), you can cast Enlarge Person on your AC even though it normally only targets people - for example. A bit of a niche use, mind.


This is the more important part to me about Share Spells than the ability to cast a spell on yourself and on your companion at the same time.

There are two ways to do this.

1) Cast a Personal spell on yourself and share it with your adjacent companion. This ignores type limitations (as Fred indicates) and doubles up on the spell's effects, but the effect ends on the companion if it moves away from you.

2) Cast a Personal spell directly on the companion. This won't ignore type limits (i.e. no Enlarge Person on the companion), but it allows Personal spells to hit something other than you, and it does not end if the companion moves away.

The OP seems aware of the first use, but not the second. 

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2) Cast a Personal spell directly on the companion. This won't ignore type limits (i.e. no Enlarge Person on the companion), but it allows Personal spells to hit something other than you, and it does not end if the companion moves away.

I'd even ask the DM for a ruling on bypassing the type limitation; the text doesn't make it clear whether it means "share spells" just as the spells affecting both master and familiar at once, or as the entire "share spells" ability.

But it's useful, either way.

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Some of you are partially correct, but then partially incorrect. The following is from rules of the game, and though it's worded for familiars, it's the same for companions. Those of you that are used to cheating double-duty out of cure spells will immedietly scream "NOT OFFICIAL!". Posh. Play your game your way, I really don't care!, but this was the intent. It does however fairly clearly explain when creature type matters and the rest.

 =========================


A familiar and master can share spells.


The master decides when spells are shared. To be shared, the master must cast the spell and the spell must have the master as its target. The spell must have a target entry; effect and area spells cannot be shared. See Rules of the Game: Reading Spell Descriptions for a discussion of targets, effects, and areas. Spells with touch range cannot be shared unless the master targets himself with the touch.


The master and familiar can share spells even if the spells normally do not affect creatures of the familiar's type (usually magical beast). The shared spell does not have to be an arcane spell; any spell the master casts himself can be shared with the familiar. The master cannot share spell-like abilities or supernatural abilities, nor can the master and familiar share effects from magic items.


To share a spell, the familiar must be within 5 feet of the master and there must be an unbroken line of effect between the master and the familiar. If the shared spell has a duration other than instantaneous, the familiar must remain with 5 feet of the master and maintain an unbroken line of effect to the master or lose the spell's benefits. Once the familiar loses the benefits from a particular casting of a spell, it cannot regain them again.


When the familiar and the master share a spell, they function as one being where the spell's effects are concerned. For example, if the master chooses to share a teleport spell with his familiar, the familiar doesn't count toward the spell's creature limit. Likewise, if the master shares a water breathing spell with his familiar, the familiar shares the master's portion of the spell's duration and does not count as another creature touched. A shared mirror image spell creates duplicates of both the master and the familiar, and a successful hit on either the master's or the familiar's image eliminates one duplicate master and one duplicate familiar. A shared protection from energy spell shields both the master and the familiar, but all energy damage that either the familiar or the master suffers is deducted from the total amount of energy the spell can absorb.


In spite of the foregoing, some aspects of the master and familiar always remain distinct. The master and familiar have two separate pools of hit points. If the master casts a cure wounds spell, the hit points bestowed must go either to the master or to the familiar. If points are left over after the chosen recipient reaches full hit points, the excess can go to the other pool. In a similar fashion, the master and familiar both have their own ability scores, and magic that enhances or improves an ability score must all go to either the master or the familiar.


Some spells have benefits that can be fully shared and other benefits that must be allocated to the familiar or to the master. For example, an aid spell grants temporary hit points and bestows a +1 morale bonus on attack rolls and saves against fear effects. If the master and the familiar share an aid spell, only one of them gets the temporary hit points, but both receive the morale bonus.


Some spells require special handling when shared. See Rules of the Game: All About Polymorph for an example.


The master also has the option of casting any spell with a target of "you" on the familiar as a spell with touch range. If the master does so, he does not share the effect with the familiar, but the familiar retains the spell's benefits for as long as the spell lasts no matter where the familiar goes afterward.



 
Some of you are partially correct, but then partially incorrect. The following is from rules of the game, and though it's worded for familiars, it's the same for companions. Those of you that are used to cheating double-duty out of cure spells will immedietly scream "NOT OFFICIAL!". Posh. Play your game your way, I really don't care!, but this was the intent. It does however fairly clearly explain when creature type matters and the rest.


Neue, I don't begruge your playstyle one iota (and whenever you've asked for help I do my absolute best to remain within your limits), but the condescension you repay us with is uncalled for.

It's also ill-informed, as "optimizer" healing doesn't bother with cure spells except at the lowest of the low levels, and in the specific context of the animal companion Share Spells wouldn't be needed anyway (as tactical use of the companion at low levels, even in core-only, involves the druid staying out of range and the companion taking the hits, so barring stray arrows only the companion would need the healing anyway. Of all spellcasters, a non-wild-shaped druid is uniquely suited for cover, as the majority of their spells have casting times of 1 round or longer* and the companion can keep up a more direct combat presence in the meantime).

That said, I'd forgotten about that article, and it's a good observation that it's there. My complaint isn't "not official", but rather "no rules precedent" - i.e. there's no mechanism for splitting up multiple-effect spells and no guidelines for which aspects are kept separate and which are shared. (The most complicated spells - polymorphs - explicitly do "double up": check the linked All About Polymorph series, which clearly says so.) Trying to apply those paragraphs literally with a complex spell would be a nightmare - and, despite your intentions, would attract rules lawyers and nitpickers far more than "doubling up" on band-aid spells would.

*
The reason for this is because many of those spells give the druid extra actions of a sort (summoning spells most obviously, but also spells like Call Lightning), so the spell itself takes the druid out of battle for a turn as a balancing measure. Talk about the action economy isn't just the domain of the optimizer - it's built right into the system, and the druid spell list is a clear example in the core books.

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[AR] Heavy Crusader: No Rest. No Mercy. No Matter What. (Melee, Damage (No charging), Variable, Theme).
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[RT] God Hand: What did the five fingers say to the face? (Melee/Gish, Unarmed, SAD, Theme)
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[TS] Holy Fire: Just getting warmed up! (Casting, damage, theme (fire), theme (sacred), blasting)

[TS] Groundhog Mage: ♪Let’s do the time warp again♪ (Casting, stunt, setting-specific (Faerun), spell stamina / versatility, spontaneous wizard)

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Want to see how the entire group rolls?
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[TS/RT/AR] Optimization Article: The Flash Step
[RT] Optimization Article: Kung Fu Witchcraft

 

Seishi: I think it might be fun to have a one-off [game] tuned fairly, but with the intention of wiping the party. 

DisposableHero_: if [my campaign] has taught me nothing else, it is that with this group, nothing tuned fairly will ever wipe the party

RadicalTaoist: I've been throwing **** at this group that's 5 levels over CRed in DFN, and have yet to wipe the party.

Tempest, you're absolutely correct; I came across too harsh once again. Chalk it up to a low charisma score and poor social media skills on my part. I apologize to the forum.

Neue 
New question: It's in regards to all animal companions, but is best asked with a simple example. 

The Wolf has the attack Bite +3. 

Does it get that +3 bonus, its BAB and its STR bonus to its attack roll?

Or does that +3 represent its BAB? That's the listing for a lvl. 1 Wolf, who if used as an Animal Companion wouldn't have a BAB of +3 it'd be +0. 

Thanks!  
A Wolf's +3 attack bonus represents its BAB + ability modifier.  The Wolf's 2 HD of animal gives it a +1 BAB. It's STR modifier is only +1 but it gets to use the +2 from its DEX modifier because it also has the Weapon Finesse feat.

P.S.  Don't worry too much about thread Necromancy arround here provided you actually have something new to add.  Here you want more info on the same topic so asking in the same thread is a pretty good idea and completely respected.
 
New question: It's in regards to all animal companions, but is best asked with a simple example. 

The Wolf has the attack Bite +3. 

Does it get that +3 bonus, its BAB and its STR bonus to its attack roll?

Or does that +3 represent its BAB? That's the listing for a lvl. 1 Wolf, who if used as an Animal Companion wouldn't have a BAB of +3 it'd be +0. 

Thanks!  


The number in the stat block accounts for everything (except situational modifiers like flanking).

Wolves have 2 racial hit dice and are of the Animal type, which has 3/4 base attack (as cleric). Thus, two levels of Animal have a base attack of +1. Add to this the wolf's Strength modifier (+1, from 13 Strength) and the modifier from its Weapon Focus (Bite) feat, and you have a final attack bonus of +3.

Later on, when the wolf gets extra hit dice from being an animal companion, its base attack bonus will improve. Similarly, once its Strength goes up, its attack bonus with its bite will also improve.

I have no idea what you mean when you say  "That's the listing for a lvl. 1 Wolf, who if used as an Animal Companion wouldn't have a BAB of +3 it'd be +0." The animal companion rules say nothing of the sort for a base attack. (And, strictly speaking, it's a level 2 wolf, as it has 2 hit dice, with the animal companion benefits of a 1st level druid.)

Finally, I feel obligated to mention that if you take a riding dog and train it for war, it gains the wolf's automatic trip, and is stronger than the wolf (although the wolf has better automatic feats, and is slightly faster).


(EDIT: Steven, I think you misread "Weapon Focus" as "Weapon Finesse". There are several animals with that as a bonus feat, but wolves aren't among them.) 

Cancer prognosis: I am now cancer-free.

Weekly Optimization Series

Show
These are NOT all my creations! The lead authors are identified as follows: [TS] Tempest Stormwind, [AR] Andarious Rosethorn, [RT] Radical Taoist, [SN] Sionnis, [DH] DisposableHero_, [SH] Seishi.

[TS] The Pinball Brothers: Large And In Charge (Melee, Lockdown, Charge, Juggling)
[TS] Ashardalon Reborn: I Will Swallow Your Soul (Melee, Fear, Negative Levels, AoE, Theme)
[AR] "A"-Game Paladin: Play That Funky Music, Knight Boy! (Team Support, Melee, Theme, Single-Class)
[RT] Uncanny Trapsmith: Get in, make it look like an accident, get out. (Skillmonkey, Stealth/Scout/Infiltration, Unorthodox Methods, Theme)
[AR] Wizsassin: *Everything* is permitted. (Spellcaster, Support, Sneak Attack, Utility)
[TS] Phantom Rush: General Gish Gouda. (Gish, Theme, Setting-Specific(Eberron), Early-Entry PrC)
[TS] Storm Knight: Another kind of gish. (Melee/"Gish", Theme, Setting-Specific(Eberron), Unorthodox Methods)
[TS] Inevitable Nightmare: The weapon you only have to fire once. (Melee, "Unorthodox" Methods (no charging), Reliability)
[AR] Captain Constitution: The number one threat to America. (Melee, TOUGHTOUGHTOUGH, Defense, Theme)
[AR] Nuker: I casts the spells that makes the peoples fall down! (Spellcaster, damage, blasting, damage)
[TS] Dread Lord of the Dead: Let the Reaping Begin! (NPC-only, Variable (combat/casting/leadership), Iconic Villain, Theme)
[AR] Heavy Crusader: No Rest. No Mercy. No Matter What. (Melee, Damage (No charging), Variable, Theme).
[TS] Gun Fu: It's bullet time (Ranged, THEORETICAL, Twin weapons, Theme)
[RT] Face First: We should talk. (Psionic, social, mind-control, info-management)
[SN] Chaingun Porcupine: Never Enuff Dakka. (Ranged, Skirmishing, Spike Damage, Incarnum)
[RT] Always On Edge: The Mortal Draw deals death. (Melee, Generalist, Dungeoneering, Stunt)
[AR] Feral Druid: Real feral taste. Zero druid calories. (Melee, offense, damage, murder)
[RT] Rusty!: Man's Best Friend (Sentry, Support, Backup, Rearguard)
[RT] The T3 (Tashalatora Triple Threat): My Kung Fu is More Powerful (Hybrid, Flex-Function, Melee, Caster)
[RT] The #1 Snoipah: Boom. 'Eadshot. (Caster, Theme, Spike, Trapscout)
[AR] Dreamblade: Rest in Pieces. (Melee, Damage, Single-Class, Combo/Momentum)
[AR] Evasion Tank: “When fighting angry blind men, is best to stay out of the way.” (Melee, Tank, Unorthodox Methods (attack negation), Theme)
[DH] Psycarnum Warrior: ↑↑↓↓←→←→BA Start (Melee, Tank, Psionics, Incarnum, 1337 h4x)
[AR] Heavy Weapons Elf: WHO TOUCHED MY BOW? (Ranged, Cohort, Damage, Unorthodox Methods (ranged ToB))
[RT] Gnowhere Gnome: A little man who wasn't there (Caster, Stealth, Single-Class, Elusive)
[AR] Uberflank: I got your back. (Melee, support, stunt, teamwork)
[TS] Flip the Bird: Everyday I'm shuffling (Ranged, harrier, unorthodox methods (ranged ToB / off-turn movement), support)
[DH] Eat Sleep Gank: Real Ultimate Power (Stealth, Assassination, Spike, Magic Versatility)
[AR] Slash and Burn: Mind, Body, Blade, Flame / Aspects of a greater whole / which delivers death. (Melee, Theme (flex-style), Damage, Stunt)
[RT] Edge of the Light: Cut, Fade to Black (Melee, Defense/Offense, Momentum, Tactical)
[RT] Quiet Murder: Cut throats, not corners. (Melee, Stealth, Harrier, Tactical)
[TS] Wand Overdrive: Say Hello to my little friends. (Caster, support/artillery/variable, wand specialist)
[RT] God Hand: What did the five fingers say to the face? (Melee/Gish, Unarmed, SAD, Theme)
[AR] Zero Buff Time Gish: Try to keep up! (Gish, Speed, Movement, Opportunity)
[TS] Robo Tackle: I Am Iron Man. (Melee, setting-specific (Eberron), positioning, theme, stunt)

[TS] Holy Fire: Just getting warmed up! (Casting, damage, theme (fire), theme (sacred), blasting)

[TS] Groundhog Mage: ♪Let’s do the time warp again♪ (Casting, stunt, setting-specific (Faerun), spell stamina / versatility, spontaneous wizard)

[RT] Captain Charisma: All she wants to do is dance (Hybrid (melee/support), SAD, Theme (criticals), Theme (flex-style)

[TS] Assassin's Speed: A blade in the crowd (Melee (technical), iaijutsu, SAD, theme (Assassin's Creed), tutorial)

 

Want to see how the entire group rolls?
[All] Party Optimization Showcase: Dead for Nothing
[TS/RT/AR] Optimization Article: The Flash Step
[RT] Optimization Article: Kung Fu Witchcraft

 

Seishi: I think it might be fun to have a one-off [game] tuned fairly, but with the intention of wiping the party. 

DisposableHero_: if [my campaign] has taught me nothing else, it is that with this group, nothing tuned fairly will ever wipe the party

RadicalTaoist: I've been throwing **** at this group that's 5 levels over CRed in DFN, and have yet to wipe the party.

Thanks, guys! That helps a lot! 











"I have no idea what you mean when you say  "That's the listing for a lvl. 1 Wolf, who if used as an Animal Companion wouldn't have a BAB of +3 it'd be +0." The animal companion rules say nothing of the sort for a base attack. (And, strictly speaking, it's a level 2 wolf, as it has 2 hit dice, with the animal companion benefits of a 1st level druid.)"





 
I guess instead of lvl. 1 Wolf, I meant a regular (base) wolf. Then again, as soon as a wolf becomes my companion I guess it isn't a regular ole wolf anymore, because I was referring to its BAB being equal to that of the Druid, and a lvl. 1 Druid of course has a BAB of +0. 

The 3.0 MM actually lists the base Wolf as having Weapon Finesse (bite). I guess that's a typo, because Weapon Focus is generally written with the weapon following it in parentheses. 

Also, I appreciate the tip on the Riding Dog, but I'd much rather have a Wolf. Even though it's the more typical Animal Companion, I personally feel it's cooler than the dog. I'm not too worried about losing that extra bit of combat power. Though, right now I'm pretty weak in the party without Wild Shape (we all just hit level 3). We've got a Warblade, which is just nuts on its own, then a Cleric who's getting to wield a Halberd with +1d4 ice damage and whose scribing scrolls on a whim at zero charge... Yeah, new DM. 

Anywho, since we just hit 3, let me give this a shot. I've only played two Rogues before, so this leveling of Animal Companions is completely new to me. Sorry! 

All right, when I'm at level three the wolf gets a bonus 2 HD, bringing him up to 4 HD. At 3/4 BAB progression, he's got a +3 BAB. His STR/DEX also goes up a point, bringing him to 14 and a modifier of +2. We're at +5 for meelee. Then he's got Weapon Focus (Bite), bringing it up to +6. 

... Did I do it all right there?

Seriously, your help is much appreciated. I think after this I'll have it down. 

EDIT: I have the handy Excel spread sheet that calculates your Animal Companion leveling where basically all you have to do is put in your Druid level and the Animal and it does the rest. It's nice, but I'd like to understand what's going on with that math rather than just shrugging and accepting it

EDIT 2: As long as we're talking Druids, I'm personally focus on my Animal Companion and summons, as I've got Augment Summoning and the Companion Spellbond feat, until I get up to Wild Shaping. It's going OK so far. I buff an ally if I've got a free turn and it looks like a fight where we'll need it. Is there something else I should be doing as a low level Druid? And what weapon should I use? It may be janky, but I like the idea of a club, and have used Shillalegh a couple of times which is a neat spell when thought about its effect in the world, rather than its effectiveness as a game mechanic. 
As a Celtic Druid in real life, I say stick with the club. As a gamer, the male goliath barbarian/druid I was playing last month was level 10 and pulling down this damage:


Club +15/10 20x2 2d8+10


-shillelagh +15/10 20x2 4d8+11

(It's a greatclub, but you get the idea)

I always pictured it in the celtic model, with a bronze ring around the top.

All of my games are at an end however, as my wife passed away last week, so basically so did every character.

Good luck friend! 


 
I guess instead of lvl. 1 Wolf, I meant a regular (base) wolf. Then again, as soon as a wolf becomes my companion I guess it isn't a regular ole wolf anymore, because I was referring to its BAB being equal to that of the Druid, and a lvl. 1 Druid of course has a BAB of +0.



The actual rules say "An animal companion’s base attack bonus is the same as that of a druid of a level equal to the animal’s HD." Since druids have the same BAB as clerics (3/4 HD), everything I said holds true. Wolves have 2 HD, so they have the base attack bonus of a 2nd level druid (+1). They also have 13 Strength (+1) and Weapon Focus: Bite (+1), for a total attack bonus of +1.

The 3.0 MM actually lists the base Wolf as having Weapon Finesse (bite). I guess that's a typo, because Weapon Focus is generally written with the weapon following it in parentheses.

That's because the 3e Weapon Finesse also was limited to a single weapon. It didn't just trigger on all of them.

Though, right now I'm pretty weak in the party without Wild Shape (we all just hit level 3). We've got a Warblade, which is just nuts on its own, then a Cleric who's getting to wield a Halberd with +1d4 ice damage and whose scribing scrolls on a whim at zero charge... Yeah, new DM.


You're level 3?

Buy barding for the animal companion (note that they are NOT bound by druid restrictions on metal armor; leather is the budget option, but don't neglect the masterwork chain shirt if youv'e got the money).

Prepare spells like Produce Flame, Flame Blade, or Flaming Sphere. (You're at a level where damage is still viable.) If you've got a spell left, consider Shilleighleigh. Buy a Healing Belt or a wand of Cure Light Wounds to cover for any damage you receive. You'll bump up a tier without too much hassle. 

That's all core or pretty much core. You can go far beond that. Druids, even pre-wild-shape, can be pretty badass so long as they know what they're doing and think tactically.

That said, only the "no charge for scrolls" thing bothers me from what your DM is doing, and that's an easy change to fix.

All right, when I'm at level three the wolf gets a bonus 2 HD, bringing him up to 4 HD. At 3/4 BAB progression, he's got a +3 BAB. His STR/DEX also goes up a point, bringing him to 14 and a modifier of +2. We're at +5 for meelee. Then he's got Weapon Focus (Bite), bringing it up to +6.

... Did I do it all right there?

Yes, you did it all right. 
EDIT: I have the handy Excel spread sheet that calculates your Animal Companion leveling where basically all you have to do is put in your Druid level and the Animal and it does the rest. It's nice, but I'd like to understand what's going on with that math rather than just shrugging and accepting it


I love tools like that, but I NEVER recommend them for new playes since they prevent the player from learning the math of the game. I write all of mine as a result.

EDIT 2: As long as we're talking Druids, I'm personally focus on my Animal Companion and summons, as I've got Augment Summoning and the Companion Spellbond feat, until I get up to Wild Shaping. It's going OK so far. I buff an ally if I've got a free turn and it looks like a fight where we'll need it. Is there something else I should be doing as a low level Druid? And what weapon should I use? It may be janky, but I like the idea of a club, and have used Shillalegh a couple of times which is a neat spell when thought about its effect in the world, rather than its effectiveness as a game mechanic. 


The aforementioned Produce Flame, Flame Blade, and Flaming Sphere can be pretty strong on a low-level druid in a low CR game. Magic Fang helps your animal companion fare better against low-level damage reduction. 

There's more, but I'd have to check noncore resources and I'm at a conference right now (i.e. away from my library). 

Cancer prognosis: I am now cancer-free.

Weekly Optimization Series

Show
These are NOT all my creations! The lead authors are identified as follows: [TS] Tempest Stormwind, [AR] Andarious Rosethorn, [RT] Radical Taoist, [SN] Sionnis, [DH] DisposableHero_, [SH] Seishi.

[TS] The Pinball Brothers: Large And In Charge (Melee, Lockdown, Charge, Juggling)
[TS] Ashardalon Reborn: I Will Swallow Your Soul (Melee, Fear, Negative Levels, AoE, Theme)
[AR] "A"-Game Paladin: Play That Funky Music, Knight Boy! (Team Support, Melee, Theme, Single-Class)
[RT] Uncanny Trapsmith: Get in, make it look like an accident, get out. (Skillmonkey, Stealth/Scout/Infiltration, Unorthodox Methods, Theme)
[AR] Wizsassin: *Everything* is permitted. (Spellcaster, Support, Sneak Attack, Utility)
[TS] Phantom Rush: General Gish Gouda. (Gish, Theme, Setting-Specific(Eberron), Early-Entry PrC)
[TS] Storm Knight: Another kind of gish. (Melee/"Gish", Theme, Setting-Specific(Eberron), Unorthodox Methods)
[TS] Inevitable Nightmare: The weapon you only have to fire once. (Melee, "Unorthodox" Methods (no charging), Reliability)
[AR] Captain Constitution: The number one threat to America. (Melee, TOUGHTOUGHTOUGH, Defense, Theme)
[AR] Nuker: I casts the spells that makes the peoples fall down! (Spellcaster, damage, blasting, damage)
[TS] Dread Lord of the Dead: Let the Reaping Begin! (NPC-only, Variable (combat/casting/leadership), Iconic Villain, Theme)
[AR] Heavy Crusader: No Rest. No Mercy. No Matter What. (Melee, Damage (No charging), Variable, Theme).
[TS] Gun Fu: It's bullet time (Ranged, THEORETICAL, Twin weapons, Theme)
[RT] Face First: We should talk. (Psionic, social, mind-control, info-management)
[SN] Chaingun Porcupine: Never Enuff Dakka. (Ranged, Skirmishing, Spike Damage, Incarnum)
[RT] Always On Edge: The Mortal Draw deals death. (Melee, Generalist, Dungeoneering, Stunt)
[AR] Feral Druid: Real feral taste. Zero druid calories. (Melee, offense, damage, murder)
[RT] Rusty!: Man's Best Friend (Sentry, Support, Backup, Rearguard)
[RT] The T3 (Tashalatora Triple Threat): My Kung Fu is More Powerful (Hybrid, Flex-Function, Melee, Caster)
[RT] The #1 Snoipah: Boom. 'Eadshot. (Caster, Theme, Spike, Trapscout)
[AR] Dreamblade: Rest in Pieces. (Melee, Damage, Single-Class, Combo/Momentum)
[AR] Evasion Tank: “When fighting angry blind men, is best to stay out of the way.” (Melee, Tank, Unorthodox Methods (attack negation), Theme)
[DH] Psycarnum Warrior: ↑↑↓↓←→←→BA Start (Melee, Tank, Psionics, Incarnum, 1337 h4x)
[AR] Heavy Weapons Elf: WHO TOUCHED MY BOW? (Ranged, Cohort, Damage, Unorthodox Methods (ranged ToB))
[RT] Gnowhere Gnome: A little man who wasn't there (Caster, Stealth, Single-Class, Elusive)
[AR] Uberflank: I got your back. (Melee, support, stunt, teamwork)
[TS] Flip the Bird: Everyday I'm shuffling (Ranged, harrier, unorthodox methods (ranged ToB / off-turn movement), support)
[DH] Eat Sleep Gank: Real Ultimate Power (Stealth, Assassination, Spike, Magic Versatility)
[AR] Slash and Burn: Mind, Body, Blade, Flame / Aspects of a greater whole / which delivers death. (Melee, Theme (flex-style), Damage, Stunt)
[RT] Edge of the Light: Cut, Fade to Black (Melee, Defense/Offense, Momentum, Tactical)
[RT] Quiet Murder: Cut throats, not corners. (Melee, Stealth, Harrier, Tactical)
[TS] Wand Overdrive: Say Hello to my little friends. (Caster, support/artillery/variable, wand specialist)
[RT] God Hand: What did the five fingers say to the face? (Melee/Gish, Unarmed, SAD, Theme)
[AR] Zero Buff Time Gish: Try to keep up! (Gish, Speed, Movement, Opportunity)
[TS] Robo Tackle: I Am Iron Man. (Melee, setting-specific (Eberron), positioning, theme, stunt)

[TS] Holy Fire: Just getting warmed up! (Casting, damage, theme (fire), theme (sacred), blasting)

[TS] Groundhog Mage: ♪Let’s do the time warp again♪ (Casting, stunt, setting-specific (Faerun), spell stamina / versatility, spontaneous wizard)

[RT] Captain Charisma: All she wants to do is dance (Hybrid (melee/support), SAD, Theme (criticals), Theme (flex-style)

[TS] Assassin's Speed: A blade in the crowd (Melee (technical), iaijutsu, SAD, theme (Assassin's Creed), tutorial)

 

Want to see how the entire group rolls?
[All] Party Optimization Showcase: Dead for Nothing
[TS/RT/AR] Optimization Article: The Flash Step
[RT] Optimization Article: Kung Fu Witchcraft

 

Seishi: I think it might be fun to have a one-off [game] tuned fairly, but with the intention of wiping the party. 

DisposableHero_: if [my campaign] has taught me nothing else, it is that with this group, nothing tuned fairly will ever wipe the party

RadicalTaoist: I've been throwing **** at this group that's 5 levels over CRed in DFN, and have yet to wipe the party.

All of my games are at an end however, as my wife passed away last week, so basically so did every character. 


...I'm sorry to hear that. For what it's worth, you have my condolences. 

You've remarked on my signature in the past as having some intersection with your experience; if you'd like to talk, feel free to send me a message (normally I don't reply to PMs; I'll most definitely make an exception). 

Cancer prognosis: I am now cancer-free.

Weekly Optimization Series

Show
These are NOT all my creations! The lead authors are identified as follows: [TS] Tempest Stormwind, [AR] Andarious Rosethorn, [RT] Radical Taoist, [SN] Sionnis, [DH] DisposableHero_, [SH] Seishi.

[TS] The Pinball Brothers: Large And In Charge (Melee, Lockdown, Charge, Juggling)
[TS] Ashardalon Reborn: I Will Swallow Your Soul (Melee, Fear, Negative Levels, AoE, Theme)
[AR] "A"-Game Paladin: Play That Funky Music, Knight Boy! (Team Support, Melee, Theme, Single-Class)
[RT] Uncanny Trapsmith: Get in, make it look like an accident, get out. (Skillmonkey, Stealth/Scout/Infiltration, Unorthodox Methods, Theme)
[AR] Wizsassin: *Everything* is permitted. (Spellcaster, Support, Sneak Attack, Utility)
[TS] Phantom Rush: General Gish Gouda. (Gish, Theme, Setting-Specific(Eberron), Early-Entry PrC)
[TS] Storm Knight: Another kind of gish. (Melee/"Gish", Theme, Setting-Specific(Eberron), Unorthodox Methods)
[TS] Inevitable Nightmare: The weapon you only have to fire once. (Melee, "Unorthodox" Methods (no charging), Reliability)
[AR] Captain Constitution: The number one threat to America. (Melee, TOUGHTOUGHTOUGH, Defense, Theme)
[AR] Nuker: I casts the spells that makes the peoples fall down! (Spellcaster, damage, blasting, damage)
[TS] Dread Lord of the Dead: Let the Reaping Begin! (NPC-only, Variable (combat/casting/leadership), Iconic Villain, Theme)
[AR] Heavy Crusader: No Rest. No Mercy. No Matter What. (Melee, Damage (No charging), Variable, Theme).
[TS] Gun Fu: It's bullet time (Ranged, THEORETICAL, Twin weapons, Theme)
[RT] Face First: We should talk. (Psionic, social, mind-control, info-management)
[SN] Chaingun Porcupine: Never Enuff Dakka. (Ranged, Skirmishing, Spike Damage, Incarnum)
[RT] Always On Edge: The Mortal Draw deals death. (Melee, Generalist, Dungeoneering, Stunt)
[AR] Feral Druid: Real feral taste. Zero druid calories. (Melee, offense, damage, murder)
[RT] Rusty!: Man's Best Friend (Sentry, Support, Backup, Rearguard)
[RT] The T3 (Tashalatora Triple Threat): My Kung Fu is More Powerful (Hybrid, Flex-Function, Melee, Caster)
[RT] The #1 Snoipah: Boom. 'Eadshot. (Caster, Theme, Spike, Trapscout)
[AR] Dreamblade: Rest in Pieces. (Melee, Damage, Single-Class, Combo/Momentum)
[AR] Evasion Tank: “When fighting angry blind men, is best to stay out of the way.” (Melee, Tank, Unorthodox Methods (attack negation), Theme)
[DH] Psycarnum Warrior: ↑↑↓↓←→←→BA Start (Melee, Tank, Psionics, Incarnum, 1337 h4x)
[AR] Heavy Weapons Elf: WHO TOUCHED MY BOW? (Ranged, Cohort, Damage, Unorthodox Methods (ranged ToB))
[RT] Gnowhere Gnome: A little man who wasn't there (Caster, Stealth, Single-Class, Elusive)
[AR] Uberflank: I got your back. (Melee, support, stunt, teamwork)
[TS] Flip the Bird: Everyday I'm shuffling (Ranged, harrier, unorthodox methods (ranged ToB / off-turn movement), support)
[DH] Eat Sleep Gank: Real Ultimate Power (Stealth, Assassination, Spike, Magic Versatility)
[AR] Slash and Burn: Mind, Body, Blade, Flame / Aspects of a greater whole / which delivers death. (Melee, Theme (flex-style), Damage, Stunt)
[RT] Edge of the Light: Cut, Fade to Black (Melee, Defense/Offense, Momentum, Tactical)
[RT] Quiet Murder: Cut throats, not corners. (Melee, Stealth, Harrier, Tactical)
[TS] Wand Overdrive: Say Hello to my little friends. (Caster, support/artillery/variable, wand specialist)
[RT] God Hand: What did the five fingers say to the face? (Melee/Gish, Unarmed, SAD, Theme)
[AR] Zero Buff Time Gish: Try to keep up! (Gish, Speed, Movement, Opportunity)
[TS] Robo Tackle: I Am Iron Man. (Melee, setting-specific (Eberron), positioning, theme, stunt)

[TS] Holy Fire: Just getting warmed up! (Casting, damage, theme (fire), theme (sacred), blasting)

[TS] Groundhog Mage: ♪Let’s do the time warp again♪ (Casting, stunt, setting-specific (Faerun), spell stamina / versatility, spontaneous wizard)

[RT] Captain Charisma: All she wants to do is dance (Hybrid (melee/support), SAD, Theme (criticals), Theme (flex-style)

[TS] Assassin's Speed: A blade in the crowd (Melee (technical), iaijutsu, SAD, theme (Assassin's Creed), tutorial)

 

Want to see how the entire group rolls?
[All] Party Optimization Showcase: Dead for Nothing
[TS/RT/AR] Optimization Article: The Flash Step
[RT] Optimization Article: Kung Fu Witchcraft

 

Seishi: I think it might be fun to have a one-off [game] tuned fairly, but with the intention of wiping the party. 

DisposableHero_: if [my campaign] has taught me nothing else, it is that with this group, nothing tuned fairly will ever wipe the party

RadicalTaoist: I've been throwing **** at this group that's 5 levels over CRed in DFN, and have yet to wipe the party.

As a Celtic Druid in real life, I say stick with the club. As a gamer, the male goliath barbarian/druid I was playing last month was level 10 and pulling down this damage:


Club +15/10 20x2 2d8+10


-shillelagh +15/10 20x2 4d8+11

(It's a greatclub, but you get the idea)

I always pictured it in the celtic model, with a bronze ring around the top.

All of my games are at an end however, as my wife passed away last week, so basically so did every character.

Good luck friend!


I'm sorry to hear that, buddy.  
"Today's headlines and history's judgment are rarely the same. If you are too attentive to the former, you will most certainly not do the hard work of securing the latter." -Condoleezza Rice "My fellow Americans... I've just signed legislation that will outlaw Russia forever. Bombing begins in five minutes." - Ronald Reagan This user has been banned from you by the letters "O-R-C" and the numbers "2, 3, 4, and 6"
User Quotes
56788208 wrote:
I do, however, have one last lesson on this subject. That last one? The only build in this post that can one-shot average opponents[by dealing twice as much damage as they have HP? I would argue that it is not optimized. Why isn't it optimized? Because it's overkill. Overkill is NOT optimizing. This means that there are portions of this build dedicated to damage which can safely be removed and thrown elsewhere. For example, you probably don't need both Leap Attack AND Headlong Rush at the same time. You could pick up Extra Rage feats for stamina, feats to support AoO effects, feats that work towards potential prestige classes, and so on. However, you could also shift our ability scores around somewhat. I mean, if you're getting results like that with 16 starting Strength, maybe you can lower it to 14, and free up four points to spend somewhere else - perhaps back into Charisma, giving you some oomph for Intimidating Rage or Imperious Command if you want. You can continue to tune this until it deals "enough" damage - and that "enough" does not need to be "100%". It could easily be, say, 80% (leaving the rest to the team), if your DM is the sort who would ban one-hit killers.
Tempest_Stormwind on Character Optimization
So when do you think Bachmann will be saying she met a mother the previous night that had a son who got a blood transfusion using a gay guy's blood, and now the son is retardedly gay?
When she meets CJ's mom?
Resident Pithed-Off Dragon Poon Slayer of the House of Trolls
Thanks Tempest, Draco. I have nothing to add in private. We beat the cancer. Completely. The radiation damage to her small intestines beat us. That said, this is not the forum for this at all, and I apologize to the moderators.

Keith