New Build and Challenge: The Twice-Betrayer of Shar

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The Twice-Betrayer of Shar, by LordofProcrastination

This thread has two purposes:
[indent]1) To showcase and improve upon a particularly nasty class/feat/spell invulnerability combination.
2) To challenge the community to create an ultra-lethal build that can put a dent in this guy.[/indent]
So, read over the build and challenge, and see what you can add.

Build: The Twice-Betrayer of Shar
1 Cleric 1 [i]Extend Spell[/i], [i]Reach Spell[/i]<br /> 2 Cleric 2<br /> 3 Cleric 3 [i]Divine Metamagic (reach)[/i]<br /> 4 Human Paragon 1<br /> 5 Human Paragon 2 [i]Ocular Spell[/i]<br /> 6 Human Paragon 3 [i]Shadow Weave Magic[/i]<br /> 7 Shadow Adept 1 [i]Tenacious Magic[/i], [i]Pernicious Magic[/i], [i]Insidious Magic[/i]<br /> 8 Ruathar 1<br /> 9 Ruathar 2 [i]Initiate of Mystra[/i]<br /> 10 Ruathar 3<br /> 11 Contemplative 1 <br /> 12 Divine Disciple 1 [i]Divine Metamagic (ocular)[/i]<br /> 13 Divine Disciple 2<br /> 14 Divine Disciple 3 <br /> 15 Divine Disciple 4 [i]Persistent Spell[/i]<br /> 16 Contemplative 2<br /> 17 Contemplative 3<br /> 18 Contemplative 4 [i]Divine Metamagic (persistent)[/i]<br /> 19 Contemplative 5<br /> 20 Contemplative 6

Race: Human
Salient Special Abilities: Five Domains (Magic, Knowledge, Illusion, Rune and Spell), Divine Health, Divine Body, Sacred Defense +2, Caster Level Check to use magic in antimagic/dead-magic zones
Spellcasting: Level 9 Divine Spells, CL 19
Key Items: Nightsticks, Ankh of Ascension, Nightsticks, Strand of Prayer Beads, Nightsticks, Pale Green Ioun Stone, Orange Ioun Stone, Nightsticks, more Nightsticks.
Flavor: Having forsaken the clergy of Shar and stolen the secrets the Dark Goddess' eyes, the Twice-Betrayer is now utterly devoted to the pure manifestation of eternal magic, Mystra. This unorthodox upstart dares to siphon the Shadow Weave's power and peerlessly spreads enduring magics of unprecedented variety with his dark gaze. True Neutral and lovin' it.

The Trick: [indent]Peristent Spell can only be used on spells of "fixed or personal range," which excludes an awful lot of extremely handy buffing spells, particularly "touch" spells. However, if you apply the Reach Spell metamagic feat, a touch spell become a ray spell with a range of 30 ft. This is a "fixed range" in that it fits only into the PHB range category of "range expressed in feet." Is it now persistable? Sure thing.

But what about those other spells with non-touch, non-personal, non-fixed ranges you might want persistified? Enter "Ocular Spell" from Lords of Madness. It can grant a fixed range of 60 ft to "ray spells and spells with a target other than personal." Now, you and all of your friends can have Persistent buffs chosen from just about every spell on the books. I'll just let your imaginations run wild with the defensive and offensive ramifications of this build.

[color=red]The Short and Fast of It:[/color] The Twice-Betrayer can persistify nearly any spell.[/indent]

[u]Sources[/u]
Show

Classes:
  • Human Paragon: Unearthed Arcana
  • Shadow Adept: Player's Guide to Faerun
  • Ruathar: Races of the Wild
  • Divine Disciple: Player's Guide to Faerun
  • Contemplative: Complete Divine


Feats:
  • Divine Metamagic: Complete Divine
  • Ocular Spell: Lords of Madness
  • Reach Spell: Complete Divine
  • Persistent Spell: Complete Arcane
  • Initiate of Mystra: Player's Guide to Faerun
  • Extend Spell: Players Handbook
  • Shadow Weave Magic: Player's Guide to Faerun
  • Tenacious Magic: Player's Guide to Faerun
  • Pernicious Magic: Player's Guide to Faerun
  • Insidious Magic: Player's Guide to Faerun


Spells:
  • Ilyykur's Mantle: Unapproachable East
  • Beastland Ferocity: Planar Handbook
  • Delay Death: Miniatures Handbook
  • Sheltered Vitality: Libris Mortis


Items:
  • Ankh of Ascension: Races of Faerun
  • Nightstick: Libris Mortis
  • Contingent Spells: Complete Arcane
  • Custom items created using DMG guidelines, nitty-gritty mathematics are generally irrelevant unless anyone particularly wants to see the pricing totals.


[size=+1]The Challenge:[/size]

What You Do: [indent]Create an ECL 20 character that can kill the Twice-Betrayer as quickly as possible. Write up a quick summary of how the character does it and how long it takes. You may use all WotC 3.5 material, except Unearthed Arcana, from which only options which do not rework the rules of the game are allowed (i.e. racial paragons and cloistered clerics are fine, Gestalt and Fractional are out). There are only two contextual exceptions. The first is Thought Bottle, which is boringly broken, and thus banned. The second ban is the Initiate of Mystra feat, because it likewise would be boring and unproductive to pit Betrayer/Cheater clones against each other.

I know that with enough dispelling, blasting, and hacking, the Betrayer's defenses will eventually fall, the trick for you will be doing it in a timely fashion. If your character takes repeated actions with a chance of failure (such as Mordenkainen's Disjunction, dispelling without overwhelming caster level, etc), keep track of those percentages to figure out how many iterations elapse before guaranteed success.[/indent]

What the Twice-Betrayer Does: [indent]The challenge pits you against the Twice-Betrayer as he should be: buffed and well-equipped.

For the purposes of the challenge, the Twice-Betrayer has a slightly less-versatile but invulnerability-empowering class build:

Cleric 3/ Human Paragon 3/ Ruathar 3/ Bone Knight 10/ Contemplative 1

Also, Shadow Weave Magic is traded in for Wild Talent.

  • Spells Active: Antimagic Field (x4), Delay Death, Beastland Ferocity, Sheltered Vitality, Death Ward, Water Breathing, Freedom of Movement, Ilyykur's Mantle, Greater Heroism, Protection from Spells, Favor of Ilmater, Neutralize Poison, Stone Body, Eladrin Form, Dweomer of Transference.
  • Additional Challenge-Specific Items: Continuous, Class-Limited Item of Antimagic Field; Continuous Item of Beastland Ferocity; Continuous Class-Limited Item of Delay Death; Item of Resistance +5;
  • Contingent Spells: Twinned Antimagic Field, All are set to successively activate upon the failure of their corresponding normally-cast version. Insert assorted semantic trickeries to trigger the contingents exactly when most favorable.
  • Tactical Notes: Unless Delay Death and Beastland Ferocity are somehow removed, the Betrayer will never die from any amount of damage. The other protective spells make the Betrayer immune to just about every conventional form of non-damage death. All the spells active at the start of the challenge are generally cast at CL 28 and due to Tenacious Magic, dispel checks are made at a DC of 15+CL, or 43.

    Any time a significant spell is dispelled/suppressed, etc, the Betrayer will spend his round recasting whatever spell if most obviously necessary for survival. The most critical protection spell, Antimagic Field, can be recast about 5 additional times during the challenge. If it becomes clear that more precise spell-loadouts are necessary for a long-haul challenger, I'll take care of that posthaste.


  • Simplified Stats: I assume bare minimum ability scores with a Wis focus.
    ---- AC: 12. Arrogantly never bothers, essentially autohit.
    ---- HP: 82 (102 post-Heroism) SR: 30
    ---- Fort: +13 unbuffed, +30 buffed; Ref: +10, +27 buffed; Will: +26, +43 buffed;
[/indent]

[u]Helpful List of Immunities:[/u]
Immunity ----------------- (Source)<br /> Death from Damage -------- ([i]Delay Death/Beastland Ferocity[/i])<br /> Disease ------------------ (Bone Knight 8, [i]Stone Body[/i])<br /> Critical Hits ------------ (Bone Knight 10, [i]Stone Body[/i])<br /> Sneak Attack ------------- (Bone Knight 10, [i]Stone Body[/i])<br /> Nonlethal Damage --------- (Bone Knight 4, [i]Favor of Ilmater[/i])<br /> Stunning ----------------- (Bone Knight 4, [i]Stone Body[/i])<br /> Energy Drain/Level Loss -- (Bone Knight 8, [i]Death Ward[/i])<br /> Ability Damage/Drain ----- (Bone Knight 8, [i]Sheltered Vitality[/i], [i]Stone Body[/i])<br /> Poison ------------------- (Bone Knight 8, [i]Stone Body[/i])<br /> Suffocation/Drowning ----- ([i]Stone Body[/i])<br /> Antimagic/Dead Magic ----- (Initiate of Mystra)<br /> Pain Effects ------------- ([i]Favor of Ilmater[/i])<br /> Dazing ------------------- ([i]Favor of Ilmater[/i])<br /> Staggering --------------- ([i]Favor of Ilmater[/i])<br /> Nauseation --------------- ([i]Favor of Ilmater[/i])<br /> Fatigue ------------------ (Bone Knight 8, [i]Sheltered Vitality[/i], [i]Favor of Ilmater[/i])<br /> Exhaustion --------------- (Bone Knight 8, [i]Sheltered Vitality[/i], [i]Favor of Ilmater[/i])<br /> Charms/Compulsions ------- ([i]Favor of Ilmater[/i])<br /> Death Effects ------------ (Bone Knight 8, [i]Death Ward[/i])<br /> Grappling ---------------- ([i]Freedom of Movement[/i])<br /> Sleep Effects ------------ (Bone Knight 8)<br /> Fear Effects ------------- ([i]Greater Heroism[/i])<br /> Nonmagical Attacks ------- ([i]Eladrin Form[/i])<br /> Death from Massive Damage - (Bone Knight 8)

[u]Disclaimer:[/u] This is going to be an evolving challenge. If someone says, "Hay LoP ur Betrayer can be killd by overeating!," I'm going to add "Protection from Heartburn" to the spell list. This isn't intended to make the Twice-Betrayer an unfair challenge, it is to keep the thread and its builds progressing towards greater optimization and not get hung up on small oversights. I'm all ears for improvements, so let's see where this nigh-invulnerable combo can go!

Variations:
Customization suggestions for adapting this build for non-challenge use.
  • If you're not interested in the additional spell options opened by either Ocular or Reach, dropped one or the other will clear the way for other feat options.
  • Likewise, while Shadow Weave Magic is thematically and strategically useful for the invulnerability challenge, it can be replaced without damaging "the trick."
  • If you're feeling magnanimous, toss in the Chain Spell feat to spread the lovin' more efficiently to large groups.
  • When wandering about in an Antimagic Field, note that your items won't be viable supplements for in-combat spellcasting. Thus, always pre-buff and load up Ocular spell.
  • If you expect to be dealing with other antimagic-ready opponents (read: The Betrayer's brother, the Cheater), go Warforged and use the spell "Golem Immunity" from Races of Eberron, which grants magical immunity to all spell-resistance-applicable spells. This variant also lets you continue to use your own items, so this is a pretty solid defensive choice if you're willing to lose the Human feats. Note that the Challenge's invulnerability combo does not work with this option.
Please Take Note:

This is a cooperative thread in which many CO optimizers are working hard to hash out important rules issues and participate in a fun competition. I am here as the original poster to provide guidance for the goals of this thread, not to pass down rulings from on high. I participate in the assorted rules-discussions as an equal member of this forum, relying on the tools of logic, textual support, and grammatical analysis to prove my points. I've been wrong sometimes, I've been right sometimes, but more importantly, I've been consistently dedicated to keeping the discussion open, rational, and fair.

Because some of you apparently believe that I have been excessively twisting the rules or "reinterpret[ing] how I wish or ignor[ing] anything against what I've decided," I am going to clarify the guidelines for how everyone (myself included) should handle the Challenge. Most of these guidelines are what I believe to be common assumptions of CO discussions, but for the sake of transparency, here they are.

The Revised Guidelines

1) Within the WotC 3.5 literature, any mechanics or rules available to players may be used in the pursuit of either defeating or defending the Twice-Betrayer. Tricks requiring significant DM-intervention, adjudication, or invention are strongly discouraged.
--- Exceptions: Material from Unearthed Arcana, the Initiate of Mystra feat, and Thought bottle are banned.
--- Translation: Go ahead, hit the Betrayer with just about anything a player could.

2) In the cases of mechanics or rules under contention, the literal reading of the text will be held in highest priority, followed by grammatical/contextual interpolations, with "Author's Intent" taking the last and least authority. Interpretation should be a matter of grammatical and contextual analysis, not how anyone thinks a matter is "supposed to be."
--- Exceptions: None.
--- Translation: Being "cheesy" is okay, just be by-the-rules-cheesy.

3) For the purposes of The Challenge, presume that the Build Trick works. (that some permutation of Reach Spell and Ocular Spell enable a broader field of persistable spells). Discussion of the Build Trick is welcomed as long as it is not confused with participation in The Challenge and follows rules 1 and 2 above.
--- Exceptions: If a conclusive new official ruling comes in from Wizards to disprove the Trick...
--- Translation: Disagreeing with the Build Trick is okay, too. Please do so in a clear manner.

4) Be Nice.
--- Translation: Don't attack people personally, keep harsh language to a minimum, don't misquote or misrepresent other people's thoughts, try not to post things that don't further the thread's goals, and follow the Code of Conduct.

That said, everyone, please hold me accountable to these. I would like nothing more than to continue this fascinating multi-faceted discussion with the knowledge that everyone participating feels fairly treated.


[u][b]FAQ[/u][/b]

Q: Is this build legal?
A: Yes, I believe so. There are a few objections to the Trick's mechanics, but they have been well-answered. Please read through the existing arguments before posting your own objections or supporting thoughts.

Q: Hey, anybody could cast these invulnerability-inducing spells. What's so special about the Twice-Betrayer?
A: He does it with style. More importantly, his metamagic wrangling allows him to actually apply Persistent Spell to all of those protective spells, meaning that he's ultrabuff with all day long with a wider array of spells than has ever been possible.

Q: Why didn't you arrange this class here or take that class dip there?
A: Probably due to lack of foresight. If there's a better set and order of classes out there for the Twice-Betrayer's thematic versatile persistability, I'd love to hear it. In fact, the rest of this post will be reserved for alternate builds which accentuate different aspects of the combo. Suggest away!

Q: Well, I have this nifty Half-Golem Voidmind War Troll that...
A: Okay, try to restrain yourself a little on radically different builds. The ultramonsters with +13 LA are fun for certain circumstances, but overall playability is an oft-neglected portion of Character Optimization that the Twice-Betrayer handles pretty well, and I wouldn't want to ruin that.
Very nice build, oh Lord. I applaud your insight which lead to this particular combination, and your thoughfullness in constructing a full and flavorful build for our enjoyment.

I have but one small question, regarding the stacking of metamagic effects. There has been some controversy on these boards over the stacking of metamagic feats, and whether they apply to the base spell, or to the spell as previously modified by metamagic. That is, can Persistant be applied to an Ocular spell because metamagik'd spell is a legal target for Persistant, or would Persistant be applied only the base version of the spell, rendering it non-Persistable?

Things to chew on, at least til I can dig up the relevant thread (There was one, a while ago. Can't seem to find it now >_<)
I'm thinking something with the Death Attack(i.e. Assassin) might work. Its not a magical ability and thus bypasses Death Ward.

It's a save or die ability. Just have to pump that intelligence to give a +31ish bonus :P

Would you mind listing the sources of those spells?
OK, I can see a character switching from Shar to Mystra in a novel, so that makes it ok in-game.

Q: Is this build legal?
A: Yes.

Do you have an example that explicitly allows 'range up to x feet' spells as 'fixed-range' ?
If those spells only let you use them at (for example) 30 feet, and if a target was at 25 feet then they were invalid, then I could see it.

And finally... what is the second betrayal?
Ahhhhhh.....

Build like this is a breath of fresh air.

Double checked all your stuff and it looks good.

For flavour reasons though, I don't think I'd be slapping out shadow magic with Mystra as my deity.

Good job!
Problem is, why is a worshipper of mystra using the shadow weave? The moment he swapped gods, he should have reverted back to using the normal weave as well. This would make the lv of shadow adept and the shadow weave magic feat moot.
While I am unable to access my books at work and thus post a full and proper build I will outline my challenger to be.

Essentially I would use a variant of the Nova Barrage build I posted here to rapidly deploy a circle magic enhanced answer to each of the defenses, beginning with a barrage of 40th caster level disjunctions to level the antimagic fields (statistically it should take 3, I will try to build as many as 6 into the attack routine to make very certain). Once disjoined of the antimagic and all the active buffs, a single Twin Split Ray Maximized (rod) enervation will easily grant 16 negative levels, which should make the followup disjunction easily able to destroy any gear the previous barrage didn't get, and a twin finger of death should be sufficient to deal the killing blow. In case things go awry the character will be packing numerous contingent reaving dispels designed to counter any magical responses.

As the challenger I will present will be a primary arcane caster (likely a wizard/Incantatrix/Halruuan Elder) with a simply concieved spell attack used to end the battle, it should fall into the category of reasonably playable.
Problem is, why is a worshipper of mystra using the shadow weave? The moment he swapped gods, he should have reverted back to using the normal weave as well. This would make the lv of shadow adept and the shadow weave magic feat moot.

In Faiths and Pantheons (and probably other sources) it says that: "It is Mystra's aim to eventually subsume the Shadow Weave into her own portfolio..." (p50)
I have but one small question, regarding the stacking of metamagic effects. There has been some controversy on these boards over the stacking of metamagic feats, and whether they apply to the base spell, or to the spell as previously modified by metamagic. That is, can Persistant be applied to an Ocular spell because metamagik'd spell is a legal target for Persistant, or would Persistant be applied only the base version of the spell, rendering it non-Persistable?

Things to chew on, at least til I can dig up the relevant thread (There was one, a while ago. Can't seem to find it now >_<)

Beat me to it. Also comes up in cases of Twinning a spell that's been Empowered. Some think you would get 2 15d6 Fireballs, others a 15d6 Fireball and a 10d6 Fireball.
If this has been updated in some 3.5 source forgive me (and post a reference), but in the old 3.0 FAQ entry on Persistent Spell, a Ray would not count as a "fixed range".
Would spells that have touch range, such as spell
resistance, be considered to have a fixed range, and
therefore be usable with the Persistent Spell feat?
No. Range touch is not “fixed” for purposes of the Persistent
Spell feat. The spell must affect the caster’s person (personal
range) or have some effect that radiates from the caster’s
person
(a fixed range, expressed in feet).

There is a more relevant FAQ entry somewhere. If I find it, I'll post it.
The only RP problem here is, Shar has the Deny Shadow Weave Salient Divine ability, while Mystra does not.

Meaning it's going to take a LOT of convincing as to why Shar would not cut off a traitor to her from the Shadow Weave, Mystra's intentions or not. She's not required to give everyone access to it.

Edit:

Mechanically for metamagic stacking, the problem with the argument about which is correct is that there is no hard evidence in rule books about "base spell"--if there was it would have flat out trumped the other side of the argument. All the metamagic abilities can be read for either belief as well, further making things worse. The only metamagic feat with any sort of weigh in for one side is Maximize spell for the base spell side, which emphasizes that maximizing and empowering a spell doesn't maximized the empowered damage; the argument against that is that it sounds like it was put in as an exception to the rule, rather than clarifying a standard.

Why don't several people send in the feat combination to cust-serv and see what happens? I want to see the fabled conflicting answers they give along with the question.

Oh, right. At least one person who asks should asks should ask cust serv to list ALL the reasons the combination wouldn't work, if it doesn't. Because if it doesn't then there are more than one reason they could give.
once you taken the shadow weave feats (and maybe this was only mentioned in 3.0) but I could have sworn you lost all access to the weave, and assuming some DM did allow you to change to mystra the fact that the shadow weave feats are now useless to you.

This is just my inter DM talking but the moment you tried that with your cleric, i'd let to switch up but the next day you'd notice that mystra ain't granting you spells, shar would have stripped you of your shadow weave feats and access and would also play deaf to any lip service you gave. You'd be more than welcome to continue worshipping mystra from the safety of one of her churches but as far as magic wise you'd be as magicial as bar stool.
Now this is just precious.

You'd never live long enough to enjoy this concept. Shar is (among other things) the goddess of secrets. She'd know of your betrayal sooner than you would. As mentioned above, she'd simply cut you off, leaving you deliciously vulnerable to all sorts of assassination.

And even if you somehow managed to make the switch undetected, I'd personally seek you out.

I
And even if you somehow managed to make the switch undetected, I'd personally seek you out.

I

In lieu of LordofProcrastinations absence I'll answer this one for him:

THEN MAKE THE EFFING BUILD ALREADY! sheesh. ;) :P
first thing i have to say this is a butifull build !
not in its own right but the fact that no one noticed the biggest flaw in the build even thow it is writen black on wight (more like black on light blue).

you are using AMF to defend yourself .... so non of your presistant spell actualy works !

so my first solution will be a simple sowrd and board level 11 fighter thats insures auto hit on him and he kills the cheater with not much of extra work...

on the other hand if i have missed somthing here that allows all this nifty protections to take place ill go with stright level 20 claric of shar (i dont know if there is and PrC spacific for shar to make it even more fun)
on first round use plenar ally to summon a whatever that serves shar and simply ask him to convay a message to the goddes herself ... "i found HIM the betrayer is here , let the goddes anger flood the infidal ! let my gate bring forth her anger!" send the messenger back and then simply open a GATE let shar deal with him ..... thats it two rounds and two spells later the betrayer is no more.
I suggest reading the Initiate of Mystra feat before patting yourself on the back zivpeled. It's in Player's Guide to Faerun.
I suggest reading the Initiate of Mystra feat before patting yourself on the back zivpeled. It's in Player's Guide to Faerun.

point taken and excepted but the second solution still works
Oh, come now. You can theoretically kill any character by convincing your god it is a good idea. However, this idea is completely inane.

If you want to kill the Betrayer, fine, but bringing the gods into the picture is not a very practical or interesting solution. There are some things that pretty much always win - we don't mention them because it is already known that they will win, and nothing a player can do will stop it.

I could day "Teh H.I.V.E. will eat ur pathetik B-Tray-Er alive lololololol, ph34r mah 20 MDJ's per round!1!!!1!" but it wouldn't change the utility of this build in the general case. It is a powerful build, and takes advantage of a powerful and hitherto unnoticed combo.

Can it be destroyed by Divine Salient madness? Yes, mot certainly. You are correct that a god could defeat the Betrayer. Such power is not and should be nessicary to destroy this build - think of something a little more creative!

If I some off as being a bit surly, please forgive me. No insult is intended towards any party.
Huh.

Human Wizard (Abjuration) 9/Red Wizard of Thay 10

Get a circle going, and snag some others to give you enough circle bonus top out caster level at 40th. Get teleported out and Gate in an Paragon Umbral Blot and order it to rub against the target in a friendly like manner.
The build is awesome and seems to be sound, but you've got a little bit of bad advice there on the end.

If you expect to be dealing with other antimagic-ready opponents (read: The Betrayer's brother, the Cheater), go Warforged and use the spell "Golem Immunity" from Races of Eberron, which grants magical immunity to all spell-resistance-applicable spells. This variant also lets you continue to use your own items, so this is a pretty solid defensive choice if you're willing to lose the Human feats.

Besides the problem of playing a warforged in the Realms, Golem Immunity renders you immune to Delay Death, Sheltered Vitality, Death Ward, Freedom of Movement, Mind Blank, Greater Heroism, Protection from Spells, and Spell Resistance. Negating the bulk of your buffs rather defeats the point of bothering to make a buff-master character in the first place.

(Of course, Golem Immunity technically makes you immune to Golem Immunity, but that paradox is neither here nor there.)

Being warforged also arguably moots Beastland Ferocity, which only references disabled or dying. Warforged at -1 or less hp aren't dying or disabled, but are instead inert. Without Beastland Ferocity, they can just beat you into negative hp and haul you away until the spells run out.

It's a great build, but it just doesn't work with warforged.
A more detailed build of my previously outlined challenger:

Build:
Human Wizard5/Incantatrix10/Halruaan Elder5

Feats:
Iron Will (1), Scribe Scroll (Wizard1), Halruaan Adept (Human), Spell Thematics (3), Empower Spell (Wizard5), Split Ray (6), Twin Spell (Incan1), Sculpt Spell (Incan4) The remaining feats are open.

Important Class Features:
Metamagic Effect, Improved Metamagic, Adroit Casting (Twin Spell, Sculpt Spell)

Spells Prepared:
Mordenkainen’s Disjunction x2 (9th)
Time Stop (9th)
Shapechange (9th)
Twin Split Ray Enervation x2 (7th)
Dimension Door (4th)

Skills:
Spellcraft 23 ranks

Gear:
Headband of Intellect +6
Greater Rod of Quickening

Intelligence 29 (+9) (18 base +5 level +6 headband)

Procedure:
Use Circle Magic (granted by halruaan elder) to increase caster level and Maximize the time stop and the two enervations. At the beginning of combat, cast time stop maximized by the circle magic, quickened by the rod. During the first time stop round walk over and use metamagic effect with sculpt spell on the betrayer’s antimagic fields to turn them each into 4 ten foot cubes not centered on the caster. Sculpt spell is normally level adjustment +3, but improved metamagic and adroit casting reduce it to +1. The DC to accomplish this is 10 + (6+1)*3 = 31, and the spellcraft check for this character is 23 ranks + 9 int gives +32 to spellcraft which makes this check automatically. After 4 rounds this will have taken the metamagic can opener to each of the fields. The 5th round of time stop is used to cast shapechange and turn into a nagahyrda and a rod quickened dimension door to get to a safe distance. At which point time resumes and you take your first round of actions. This action is to cast 5 spells in the following order:

Mordenkainen’s Disjunction
Twin Split Ray Enervation (maximized by circle magic)
Twin Split Ray Enervation (maximized by circle magic)
Mordenkainen’s Disjunction
Any save of die spell.

The first disjunction removes all the spell effects in progress (this can also easily be done with reaving dispel and arcane mastery to automatically consume and transfer all the buffs to yourself) followed by some choice enervating (which will likely result in more than 20 negative levels and death anyway). If the betrayer survives the enervating, he likely won’t survive the disjoining off all his items (with a very large negative to his saving throws) and the save or die that follows.
Oh, come now. You can theoretically kill any character by convincing your god it is a good idea. However, this idea is completely inane.

If you want to kill the Betrayer, fine, but bringing the gods into the picture is not a very practical or interesting solution. There are some things that pretty much always win - we don't mention them because it is already known that they will win, and nothing a player can do will stop it.

I could day "Teh H.I.V.E. will eat ur pathetik B-Tray-Er alive lololololol, ph34r mah 20 MDJ's per round!1!!!1!" but it wouldn't change the utility of this build in the general case. It is a powerful build, and takes advantage of a powerful and hitherto unnoticed combo.

Can it be destroyed by Divine Salient madness? Yes, mot certainly. You are correct that a god could defeat the Betrayer. Such power is not and should be nessicary to destroy this build - think of something a little more creative!

If I some off as being a bit surly, please forgive me. No insult is intended towards any party.

Pointing out Shar's abilities and Mystra's (lack of) abilities for the character was to point at the huge gaping hole in his flavor justifying the character. If he's going to claim that the character is playable, he's going to need to do a MUCH better job of closing that big hole, because the flavor makes no sense given what those two goddesses have and don't have access to.
Why do people think that a wizard is going to have access or even know of the existence of some of those spells you have listed? It's like a wizard can pick any spell from any WOTC material and have it in their spell book. That isn't the way it works. Those aren't commonly known spells and must be researched and/or discovered in mouldering old tombs or from other wizards. I hate it when people do that.
Those aren't commonly known spells and must be researched and/or discovered in mouldering old tombs or from other wizards.

Not on the CO boards they don't. ;)
Pointing out Shar's abilities and Mystra's (lack of) abilities for the character was to point at the huge gaping hole in his flavor justifying the character. If he's going to claim that the character is playable, he's going to need to do a MUCH better job of closing that big hole, because the flavor makes no sense given what those two goddesses have and don't have access to.

Saying "WTF? Shar can zot anyone who betrays her anyway!" calls more attention to the problems of adventuring in the Realms than to any inherent flaw in this build.
Saying "WTF? Shar can zot anyone who betrays her anyway!" calls more attention to the problems of adventuring in the Realms than to any inherent flaw in this build.

Yes it does expose an inherent flaw in the build...because any DM that knows anything about the Realms, knows that Shar would shut them off from the shadow weave at the very least. So, how effective is it then?
Why do people think that a wizard is going to have access or even know of the existence of some of those spells you have listed? It's like a wizard can pick any spell from any WOTC material and have it in their spell book. That isn't the way it works. Those aren't commonly known spells and must be researched and/or discovered in mouldering old tombs or from other wizards. I hate it when people do that.

Hello, welcome to the Charcter optomization boards. On this board, builds are made with the idea that charcters have access to any resources that are legally available to them under the Rules As Written. Under RAW, there is nothing stating that a person cannot access all of these spells by 20th level. There are rules stating how to purchase and coppy new spells into your spell book. That is why people think that.

It might help to read the Charcter Optomizaton FAQ, stickied at the top of the forum, it'll clear thigns like that up for you.
Hello, welcome to the Charcter optomization boards. On this board, builds are made with the idea that charcters have access to any resources that are legally available to them under the Rules As Written. Under RAW, there is nothing stating that a person cannot access all of these spells by 20th level. There are rules stating how to purchase and coppy new spells into your spell book. That is why people think that.

It might help to read the Charcter Optomizaton FAQ, stickied at the top of the forum, it'll clear thigns like that up for you.

Thanks, I figured as much. Unfortunately, that still doesn't mean it works in reality. In fact it most likely wouldn't work in >=60% of the campaigns out there.
Thanks, I figured as much. Unfortunately, that still doesn't mean it works in reality. In fact it most likely wouldn't work in >=60% of the campaigns out there.

So? This is obviously a theoretical exercise. Often those are "anything goes".
Yes it does expose an inherent flaw in the build...because any DM that knows anything about the Realms, knows that Shar would shut them off from the shadow weave at the very least. So, how effective is it then?

Or perhaps this is Shar's way of taunting Mystra? The ways of the gods are beyond mortal minds, just roll with it.
Or perhaps this is Shar's way of taunting Mystra? The ways of the gods are beyond mortal minds, just roll with it.

Or he could change his flavor so that the character IS believable--a far better solution.
Yes it does expose an inherent flaw in the build...because any DM that knows anything about the Realms, knows that Shar would shut them off from the shadow weave at the very least. So, how effective is it then?

Or the character could simply be beneath Shar's notice, or the character could be under the protection of Mystra for whatever reason, or Shar may not want to make an overt move against a champion of Mystra, or one of a hundred other reasons.

You're obsessing about this a little too much. CO Board. Concentrate on the build.
Hello everyone. Glad to see vigorous debate and development. I have limited time to answer all the concerns and suggestions made, but I'll do best to address the key issues.

Shar, Mystra, and other Thematic Issues:

It may just be my odd enjoyment of mixing things up, but to me, a character who walks a razor's edge between two of the most powerful beings in a given cosmos seems interesting, not "flawed." Because this is not just a theoretical exercise, taking a closer look at the build's playability is well worth the while.

Yes, Shar theoretically could cut this character off from the Shadow Weave at a whim. This alone does not make the build automatically disallowed or unreasonable in your average Forgotten Realms game. There is strong precendence established in Faerun for characters utilitizing the Shadow Weave in ways which seem immediately contrary to the wishes of Shar without facing any repercussions. Furthermore, there is a large difference between what a deity could do and what a deity decides to do. Shar could decimate a major city or three, but for any variety of strategic and mysterious reasons, she frequently refrains from doing so.

The tensions inherent to the basic Betrayer build prompt creative players and DMs towards any variety of contextual reasonings. Perhaps the Betrayer is intended to eventually turn traitor once more. Maybe Shar wishes him to be used as an ironic/iconic example of the Shadow Weave's might, spreading lies about the Betrayer's faithfulness, claiming that his loyalties have never really changed to entice more mages into her clutches. He may even be Mystra's chosen forerunner for her planned takeover of the Shadow Weave. The point is that these twists and turns can and should be fun, reasonable, and involving, not just excuses to beef up the Twice-Betrayer's capabilities.

Mechanically speaking, there's no reason why a follower of Mystra cannot continue to use the Shadow Weave. The Shadow Weave Magic feat itself lists the prerequisites as "Wis 15 or patron deity Shar," so for this divine caster at least, there's no problem. Of course, if the Twice-Betrayer's wisdom ever drops below 15, he has larger problems to worry about.
Perhaps the Betrayer is intended to eventually turn traitor once more. Maybe Shar wishes him to be used as an ironic/iconic example of the Shadow Weave's might, spreading lies about the Betrayer's faithfulness, claiming that his loyalties have never really changed to entice more mages into her clutches. He may even be Mystra's chosen forerunner for her planned takeover of the Shadow Weave

Perhaps the goddess of secrets has a secret plan for this character. ;)
What annoys me about the flavor is that the character is stealing secrets of Shar and making it available to Mystra, something so antithetical to Shar's portfolio of hidden secrets that the character should be dead before he converted. I would be perfectly happy if it was *any* other god than Shar, or even better, not added in at all. The god changing is totally unnecessary and just detracts from the character believability, which makes it a little more annoying to look at.

But mechanical problems:

How are you getting Mind Blank on the character? It's an 8th level Arcane spell, so you can't duplicate it with Miracle. (Edit: Unless you're perfectly willing to pay 5000 XP a cast) That leaves the other possibilities as items and other casters, which means Mind Blank should be suppressed by the field because it's not something you casted. Similarly, since Mind Blank is so high level, you can't have it as a normal Contingency. In addition, if you bought a spell as a contingency from Craft Contingency Spell, it would be suppressed because it is treated as a magical item for purposes of the Antimagic Field, while treated as an active spell by Dispel Magic varieties.

And a non-mechanical question: You know that by refreshing dispelled spells in an antimagic field, you don't gain the benefits of any of the magical items, right?
I'm not obessing, just pointing a few likely things out. I know I as a DM and my DM wouldn't allow anything close to this. While this is all mildly interesting and a cerebral exercise, it's also somewhat futile due in small part to it's flavor, which in itself it quite unusual. I do like the build and it's interesting and it certainly COULD be played in a normal campaign with some creative storytelling however it's not really likely that Shar would just standby and let her power be used to serve Mystra.
There is one more little thing that I would think someone would have jumped on. You have to actually beat your own caster level to cast through your own AMF which is doable but you are after all going to have a caster level that is almost exactly the same as what you cast AMF at. It doesn't work the other way and it looks like the plan is to have 4 AMF stacked which would mean that more than likely at least once you would fail the caster check. Assuming of course that you suddenly decided to change the feat so your spells would simply work if brought into an AMF you hit the same challenge.
Metamagic, Sweet Metamagic:

As PhaedrusXY has pointed out, and Ravashack reiterated, Wizards of the Coast has been surprisingly slow to make clear and sweeping rulings about some of the more esoteric combinations of metamagic feats as well as the Persistent Spell feat itself. My solution has been to read extremely carefully through every last word of every feat involved in a combination in conjunction with all incidental and expository text from the PHB and the splatbooks. From these sources, the only thing to do is to interpret as strictly rationally and grammatically precise as possible. This is the method used to resolve the last set of metamagic issues in the aforementioned "Metamagic Stacking Thread" (I also have lost the exact link), and I believe that it bears out this particular set. For the time being, unless anyone has a particular objection or rebuttal, I'm going to hold off on the time-intensive task of step-by-stepping this rather complex combo.


[b]The First Challenger: DisposableHero_'s Halruaanova[/b]

Metamagic Effect Correction: The Spellcraft DC to use Metamagic Effect is 18 + (3 * Modified Spell Level). Going back to the ability description, you'll find that modified spell level includes previously applied metamagic feats that alter the target spell's effects. Since all of the Antimagic Field spells were cast out of the Betrayer's 8th level slots and Persistent and Ocular Spell were applied to it, the final DC should be 18 + (3*(8 + 6 + 2 + 1)) = 18 + (3*17) = 69. A little tough to make with the current challenger build, but doable.

Missed Items/Contingents: Once the four pre-cast antimagic fields are made useless, there's still the field produced by the Betrayer's antimagic-field-item. Perhaps the Betrayer will need contingent antimagic spells...

General-purpose Solutions: If simple dispelling is a problem, perhaps the Betrayer should invest in further improving his caster level. Circle Magic contains a "maximum caster level of 40" restriction, so with the proper preparation bumping up CL beyond 40 could solve an awful lot. Also, "item-ifying" weak-link spells (in this case energy drain protectors), would be a handy solution to fill in that dangerous vulnerable space after a disjunction.

Comments: All in all, I like this method. The character is quite playable and there aren't any major rules-problems. Assuming the above fixes are enacted and countered, DisposableHero_'s Halruuanova sets the bar for speedy defeat: One hour of preparation and one round of combat.
[b]The First Challenger: DisposableHero_'s Halruaanova[/b]

Ah-hem.
Previn: Ah-hem

Alright, on to revisions.
[b]The First Challenger: DisposableHero_'s Halruaanova[/b]

Metamagic Effect Correction: The Spellcraft DC to use Metamagic Effect is 18 + (3 * Modified Spell Level). Going back to the ability description, you'll find that modified spell level includes previously applied metamagic feats that alter the target spell's effects. Since all of the Antimagic Field spells were cast out of the Betrayer's 8th level slots and Persistent and Ocular Spell were applied to it, the final DC should be 18 + (3*(8 + 6 + 2 + 1)) = 18 + (3*17) = 69. A little tough to make with the current challenger build, but doable.

Damn, *reaches into his bag of tricks*
+5 Tome of Clear Thought (+3)
Custom Build +30 Spellcraft item (likely commissioned when the threat of the betrayer is revealed to the proposed hunter, but also a staple point in optimizing an incantatrix, so not out of the realm of playability)
Item Familiar, Skill Focus, Magical Aptitude, leadship and a marshall cheerleader to let him know how cool he is, any of these will put it over the top, the least outlandish combination should land a spot in the playable department.

Done

Missed Items/Contingents: Once the four pre-cast antimagic fields are made useless, there's still the field produced by the Betrayer's antimagic-field-item. Perhaps the Betrayer will need contingent antimagic spells...

The item produces a persistent spell effect, so it is still feasable to apply the metamagic effect + sculpt spell can opener to it, meaning it merely takes another round of time stop. Metamagic effect extend spell once the time stop in the progress will take care of that, and likely contingent versions too, though I'd be up to debate weather or not contingencies fire in null time.

Empower Spell becomes Extend Spell

The three contingent death wards are a pain, I guess the final barrage will need to be modified to include a reaving dispel + arcane mastery used to temporarily suppress the contingent spells long enough to disjoin the active buffs and then disjoin again after enervating to get the items without a buffed will save. Final Barrage becomes:

Reaving Dispel (area)
Mordenkainen's Disjunction
Twin Split Ray Maximized Enervation
Mordenkainen's Disjunction
Twin Split Ray Maximized Enervation

Done

General-purpose Solutions: If simple dispelling is a problem, perhaps the Betrayer should invest in further improving his caster level. Circle Magic contains a "maximum caster level of 40" restriction, so with the proper preparation bumping up CL beyond 40 could solve an awful lot. Also, "item-ifying" weak-link spells (in this case energy drain protectors), would be a handy solution to fill in that dangerous vulnerable space after a disjunction.

Nothing you can do to the spells currently will cover disjunction. I would suggesting adding a disjoin contingency (there are a few ways to negate a disjunction, but not many), as you have zero effect on how well the disjunction nukes your active spells. Dispel Protection however, is a must, else the first Initiate of the Seven Fold Vale to come along will use Kaleidoscopic Doom to really put the thumbscrews in you.

Comments: All in all, I like this method. The character is quite playable and there aren't any major rules-problems. Assuming the above fixes are enacted and countered, DisposableHero_'s Halruuanova sets the bar for speedy defeat: One hour of preparation and one round of combat.

Thanks :D

Edit: and I'd name the build the Incantahalruaanagahydranova just so no one can pronounce it properly