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Talk:Biotic Vanguard (3.5e Class)

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Mass Effect FandomEdit

A brand new class developed with loads of Mass Effect Fandom! --Jay Freedman 06:36, February 25, 2010 (UTC)

Nice class Edit

"The following is a transcription of a previous conversation from another website." --Jay Freedman 06:52, February 25, 2010 (UTC)

This class is really cool. It kind of reminds me of a differently-themed Warlock. Couple questions/suggestions:

General:

  • First of all, does this fit a certain campaign setting? The references to Dark Matter and Dark Energy aren't familiar to me (though I'm not intimately familiar with a lot of the supplements).
  • A: I'm a big fan of Mass Effect the video game. This is inspired by that games universe.
  • Something should probably be said about how the Biotic abilities interact with spellcasting. Can they be countered? Does spellcraft identify what's being used? Again, if this belongs to a certain campaign setting then these questions are probably already answered
  • A: It's not spellcasting originally. The idea was similar to being a Ranger but without a bow and ammo. I should preface that though. Good idea.

Biotic Blast:

  • Why Wis bonus instead of Cha bonus to damage? Maybe this is a trait of Dark Matter, since the BV is not technically a spell caster.
  • A: Cha bonus is retarded IMO. But, then again, I hate the CHA stat all-together. Rant aside, its good synergy for skills and will save. Again, similar to a Ranger.
  • How does the Biotic Blast interact with feats? Can you use Point Blank Shot with it? Does arcane spell failure apply if you wear armor/shields?
  • A: It does not interact with feats. I will not be making any feat for it either. And, its an Extraordinary Ability not Supernatural or Spell-like, so it has nothing to do with spells or spell failure. Good question though.
  • Is BB subject to SR or damage reduction?
  • A: DR yes. SR no. I should specify whether or not its an energy form though. Maybe not fire but something.
  • Does it use up one or both hands?
  • A: Good question. I imagine it should only require one free hand to utilize.
  • Biotic Blast sounds like something that should be a ranged touch attack and not a ranged attack, but then it would be too powerful combined with a full BAB. I don't have any suggestions for this, just thinking out loud.
  • A: No no no. No ranged touch. I feel that is always abused. Armor protects against these attacks.
  • It says that Bionic Blast deals mental damage, but I don't see anywhere what that damage is.
  • A: That was more fluff than anything. It won't be included in an actually damage stat.
  • Seems like Dark Tech level 01 should just be combined with the description of Biotic Blast, since you never have Biotic Blast without Dark Tech level 01.
  • A: Probably. Just trying to break up the text a little.

Dark Tech:

  • Does the stun effect allow for a saving through? If so, what is the DC?
  • A: Shockwave itself has a gradual curve of difficulty in its DC. 10+1/2lv+WisMod. If you get hit with the original blast itself, then this is an added effect for free. I dislike multiple rolls and so do most GM's.

Blast Tech:

  • This progression seems a little too good, compared to, say, an archer. I would keep this on par with Rapid Shot and bonus attacks from high BAB:
    • Level 02: gain one attack at full BAB, all attacks at -2 (aka Rapid Shot) (+0/+0)
    • Level 06: gain an attack, but at a -5 penalty (+6/+1), can combine with above to have three attacks (+4/+4/-1)
    • Level 11: gain an attack, but at a -10 penalty (+11/+6/+1), can combine with above to have four attacks (+9/+9/+4/-1)
    • Level 16: gain an attack, but at a -15 penalty (+16/+11/+6/+1), can combine with above to have five attacks (+14/+14/+9/+4/+1)
  • A: Ok, lets think Monk then. Full attack should grant bonuses similar to a Rangers Rapid Shot and a Monks Flurry. Good idea.

Power Tech:

  • Like blast tech, this seems a little good compared to the archer feat (Manyshot/Greater Manyshot). I would suggest:
    • Level 06: two attacks with two attack rolls, at a -4 penalty (+2/+2)
    • Level 11: can add a third attack, but all attacks suffer an additional -2 penalty (+9/+9 or +7/+7/+7)
    • Level 16: can add a fourth attack, but all attacks suffer an additional -2 penalty (+14/+14 or +12/+12/+12 or +10/+10/+10/+10
  • In addition, I would lower the range of the use of Power Tech. Manyshot can only be used within 30ft, and that's probably not a bad range for Power Tech. If it's the same distance as the normal blast, then nobody in their right minds would ever *not* use this power.
  • A: This will be undergoing a change. I will be adding more utility to this, instead of just added attacks. More push/stuff.

Biotic Shell:

  • Small formatting issue: the description for this should be before the description for Power Tech, since you gain it first
  • A: Nit-picking. Thanks for verbalizing it anyway.
  • How long does it last? I'm assuming it lasts until you dismiss it, and if so, is it another minor action to dismiss?
  • A: I'm thinking of adding a sustain ability. Maintaining this ability costs your minor action every round. Then boost the benefits of the ability to match the sacrifice.
  • What are considered "biotic abilities"? I'm guessing it means every class ability is not usable in the Biotic Shell; if this is the case, I would give a lot bigger bonus for using Biotic Shell, or the ability will just be ignored. Maybe 2x your wisdom modifier.
  • A: Nit-picking. I will not explain what "biotic abilities" are. If the terminology is too vague then so be it. Again, thanks for verbalizing your concern.

Biotic Skywalker:

  • I'd say just make this a permanent +2 to jump (maybe even +4), because, other than biotic shell, which of your other abilities can use use at the same time as jumping?
  • A: Permanent, no. Maybe a movement bonus in place of the Jump bonus. An increase of 10 feet would be nice. Again, while sacrificing your minor action while maintaining.

Overall, even though I have a lot of comments, I give this class a 4/5 for originality and "funness" of play. Most of my comments come from an OCD GM's perspective: if I'm going to allow this in my game, I want absolutely every possibility accounted for.

I'm not very good at figuring out balance without having something direct to compare it to, but if you make the changes I suggested with Blast Tech and Power Tech, I think it should be right on par with an archer. The only thing the class probably lacks completely is a way to upgrade or change your biotic blast, though this might not necessarily need to be a class feature. Maybe you could create an equipment item (I'm thinking of calling them "focusing crystals") which you can use in conjunction with the blast to add elemental damage. Again, very interesting class. --Anonymous

Thank you for your comments. I have itemized your list and responded to the best of my ability. This article and the site as whole will be greatly enhanced thanks to your comments. As for the upgrades or items, no. This is a completely organic interaction, no equipment will be nessessary. Power Tech will be scrapped for a more utilitarian approach, which will hopefully satisfy any upgrades to Biotic Blast. Good insights. --Jay Freedman

Crit Tech vs. Power TechEdit

Changes:

  • Blast Tech has been changed to Crit Tech. The Full Attack Action now always for a move Sniper-like move. Better accuracy and more chance to do Crit damage. Is this better than launching four smaller attacks? Maybe, maybe not?
  • Power Tech has simply been nerfed for the time being. I got confused about the new utility moves and had to clip them. This may change in the future should I get them fixed. --Jay Freedman 21:37, February 25, 2010 (UTC)

Choose your Class SkillsEdit

I couldn't decide on what class skills to give this poor guy. So instead... I'll leave that decision up to the player. Took the number skill points(4) and doubled it(8) then added two more(10). Its a simple formula and hopefully will add a nice touch of choice for the player of this class. --Jay Freedman 21:37, February 25, 2010 (UTC)

Without a Magic Weapon?Edit

I've been putting some tough penalties on Power Tech. More attacks for less accuracy. But, without a Magic Weapon or Feat interaction are these penalties really needed? A Ranger with a +5 Magic Longbow, a +4 Armband of Dexterity, and Weapon Focus gets a +8 Attack bonus toward his accuracy when using Rapid Shot, doesn't he? So, why does Power Tech need such harsh penalties when they don't have access to this equipment boost? I might reduce the penalties because of this. --Jay Freedman 21:37, February 25, 2010 (UTC)

Buffed Power Tech. At LV3 Biotic Blast is also now considered a Magic Weapon. --Jay Freedman 21:43, February 25, 2010 (UTC)


General CommentsEdit

"The following is a transcription of a previous conversation from another website."--Jay Freedman 23:06, March 5, 2010 (UTC)

  • First of all, I'm a very tough grader, so don't feel like I'm bashing your class or anything :) For me a 4 is what most people would rate a 5.
  • This class would benefit a lot with an explanation of the background information. Words like "biotic" and "tech" don't get used a lot in the standard D&D game, so it would be nice to have these things laid out. It would be no different than if you referred to some fictional guild or society; you would need to explain what it is that society does at some point. Nevermind, like 90% of this is answered towards the bottom. Maybe the description should be moved to the top for people like me who start rating before they've read the whole thing? :)
  • You've gone away from a lot of the standards and rules of thumb laid out with the published material (Wisdom to a spontaneous attack instead of Cha; full BAB with ranged attack, instead of 3/4 BAB and ranged touch, spell-ish ability that acts like a physical attack in terms of how often you can use it in a round). This isn't good or bad, necessarily, but it makes it harder to get a mental grip on the class, if that makes any sense.
  • This class fits a very specific niche, and is only good for someone who wants to play exactly this character. It's not a great "building block" class for someone who has a concept in mind and wants to find classes which fit their concept. This doesn't detract much from the score, but
  • You refer to Biotic Restoration in Mind Tech Level 18, which you read before you read what Biotic Restoration is. A clearer way to do this would be to make Mind Tech Level 18 part of Biotic Restoration instead.
  • I'm not sure which category this falls under, but I'm still unclear about how the biotic blast works... do you gain extra attacks with high BAB just as if it were a physical weapon? (This is the type of thing I mean when I was talking about rules of thumb. If this were a spell, I would know the answer, but it's not, so I don't.)
  • Why are hide and move silently part of the basic starting package when three separate abilities give you a penalty to hiding?
  • Again, overall a great class, but I'm very picky :) --Anonymous

ResponseEdit

I'll take the time to go ahead and answer your questions for any potential viewers who might have the same. --Jay Freedman 22:46, 5 March 2010 (UTC)

  • A: Detailed Explaination: This is perhaps the most important part of the class. Understanding just what exactly it is. I will definitely move some of the information to the top section to better facility that understanding.
  • A: Rules of Thumb: In my mind, there are no rules of thumb. D&D is an evolution of ideas and trickrey. lol. Only by playing a class (or a monster, or an npc) can you truly understand it. Difficult yes, but enjoyable.
  • A: Building Blocks: The flavor was very specific too. This doesn't fit a general scheme because that scheme is already available, Psionic's. Consider this a very strange Psionic Variant.
  • A: Hide and Move-Silently where used because they are popular skills that key off your primary attribute. Dexterity. This class can function amazingly with these skills. The penalties were added with this synergy in mind. A glowing blue hue of energy surrounding your body makes you easy to see from any distance. You can be a proficient ninja just as long as your actually sneaking or taking cover. The idea is similar to muzzle bursts from firearms. You may be hidden, but your weapon exposes you.
  • A: Weapon Proficiencies: Who cares. I'm trying to expand upon the players choices, not restrict them. Strength is not a primary ability for this class so a Greatsword would be under-utilized anyway. And, your right, who would use a Longbow when you have Biotic Blast? I say this not so I can take away the proficiency but so I can keep it. The more you give the player, the better.

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