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 Post subject: Getting through the Tomb of Curses
PostPosted: Fri Feb 06, 2009 1:11 pm 
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SeanDM suggested that I could help people with building characters, given that I'm not planning on joining in the fun, and that I know a few things about D&D 3.5.
So, here are a few suggestions and guidelines that might help you out.

  • It's a solo adventure - you've got to do EVERYTHING for yourself. You'll need to be able to climb, use ropes, heal, deal with poison, fight, avoid fights, etc, etc. No-one is going to help you. Build around a class with plenty of skills. Take a level in Ranger and carry a wand of Cure Light Wounds.
  • Don't play anything that is easy to hit - check if you could hit your own character on a roll of less than 11 - if you can, then you need to boost that AC! Not being hit is better than having lots of HP.
  • Get the best saving throws you can - traps and the horrors you're likely to find in tombs and dungeons tend to have effects that you need to make saves against: save or die! You don't want to die, so you need good saves. Buy a cloak of resistance, use a class that has good base saves, maybe take the save-boosting feats.
  • Variety is the spice of D&D - as you need to be prepared, you should have a variety of weapons so you can dish out the right damage (some things are immune to certain damage, and some are immune to anything other than certain damage types). Get some oil of silversheen to deal with were-beasts, oil of magic weapon for other weirdoes, make sure you have ranged attacks and melee (keeping a good distance between you and the bad guys always helps, but you need to be ready to go toe-to-toe if they rush you).
  • Don't be detected - things can't attack you if they can't tell you're there. Some traps can even be fooled by this. Get a potion of invisibility (or two), and hide from undead, and an elixir of sneaking if you like.
  • Locks and how to undo them - a Chime of Opening will do you good here, but you need more mundane ways of getting by sealed portals. Try an axe. Lock picks and the skill to use them is quieter, but the axe (or crowbar) is a handy last resort.

Points buy
Abilities costs in the "points buy" system for D&D are not in the SRD, which I know some people use. You'll find them on page 169 of the DMG, or right here for your convenience:

All abilities start at 8
a 9 costs one
a 10 costs two
a 11 costs three
a 12 costs four
a 13 costs five
a 14 costs six
a 15 costs eight
a 16 costs ten
a 17 costs thirteen
a 18 costs sixteen

Classes in the Tomb
Not all classes are equally suited to such a scenario. This is just my opinion, but it might help you think about what you're picking.
  • Barbarian - best HP in the game, best BAB, medium skill points, trap sense, fast movement. A great combat boost to another class.
  • Bard - low HP, low AC choices, but great skills and some useful spells, including healing magic... Except that a great many of the bard's spells are mind effecting - not so useful aganst undead tomb guardians, traps or constructs. Bardic knowledge may or may not give you clues to the threats in the dungeon...
  • Cleric - good AC choices, medium HP, poor skills. You get access to the best healing magic in the game, and domains can REALLY help you out here. Plus, Augury is a 2nd level spell - take it lots! Knowing if your god thinks it'd be a good idea to do a thing is invaluable.
  • Druid - medium AC, poor AC choices, medium skills... but you can change into an animal that could be helpful... or not - the Medium sized selection has lower HD than you do at 5th level, and thus not much better BAB. Of course, being able to turn into a wolverine with Str 14, Dex 15, Con 19 for 5 hours per day means that you can ignore putting points into STR, DEX and CON for you humanoid form, and really concentrate on maxing out those mental stats. A monkey or baboon has hands, but they're both not nearly as tough as the Wolverine. If you go with Druid, you have to take the feat Natural Spell, or you'll just have to sit there, being a beastie, wishing you had access to your spells.
  • Fighter - great HP and AC possibilities, the best BAB. You can build almost any combat-oriented character with this class - but you have dreadful skill points.
  • Monk - the best saves in the game, but lower AC than others, only medium HP... You get evasion and some great features. Coupled with a bit of Ranger and Rogue, this could be very good.
  • Paladin - awesome saves (with a high CHA), the best BAB, great HP, immunities that could save your life - but dreadful skills, and no damage avoidance techniques beyond your AC. The mount might be good - assuming it'll fit in the tomb...
  • Ranger - medium AC and HP, plenty of skills, access to healing spells (even if you only take a level, you get to use wands).
  • Rogue - poor HP and AC choices, but you're the skill monkey! You get to evade area effects, sneak around, search for traps and disarm them, unlock doors.
  • Sorcerer - low HP, bad AC, poor skills, limited spell selection... The only saving grace of a sorcerer for solo adventuring is your familiar. You could pick the perfect spell list, but I wouldn't risk it.
  • Wizard -again, low HP, bad AC, poor skills... You get more spells to choose from, which means you can try to be versatile - use the Rope Trick trick: at 5th level you'll need to use the Extend Spell metamagic feat to get 8 hours safety, but this will let you fire off all your spells and then safely rest up and do it again. The only other saving grace of a sorcerer for solo adventuring is your familiar.

Anyway, those are my ramblings. Use this thread to talk about build ideas, or combinations of feats and the like, and I'll do my best to help - as I'm sure other people will do too, but can you trust the competition?
:wink:

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 Post subject: Re: Getting through the Tomb of Curses
PostPosted: Fri Feb 06, 2009 3:49 pm 
Fantastic advice thank you just what i was looking for.


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 Post subject: Re: Getting through the Tomb of Curses
PostPosted: Sat Feb 07, 2009 3:21 am 
Got a question about potions, how many can u have affecting you ie in your character system??? Its just that i look in the DMG and it didnt say so thought that i would ask, just that in 2nd ed there was a danger in mixing potions.
Cheer for any help you can give on the matter.
Ps can anyone use a wand???


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 Post subject: Re: Getting through the Tomb of Curses
PostPosted: Sat Feb 07, 2009 10:41 am 
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In the standard rules, there is no risk from using multiple potions.
"Introduction to April Fool's Day article on Miscibility Rules for 3.5"


As for wands, you can automatically use the wand of any spell that appears on any of your classes' spell lists. With the skill Use Magic Device you could activate a wand that isn't on your spell list (or indeed if you have no spells at all), but you must succeed a DC 20 Use Magic Device check. To have a better than average chance of success, you'll want to maximise Use Magic Device (8 ranks at 5th level), have a good CHA score to boost the bonus, and maybe take the Skill Focus: Use Magic Device feat (gives you +3) and the Magical Aptitude feat (gives you +2). If you can put 5 ranks into Spellcraft, too, it'll give you another +2. So, if you've got a CHA bonus of 3, you'll have 18 to add to your roll - pretty good odds you'll get that wand to work every time. Of course, it'll work for all the other magic items you've got too.

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 Post subject: Re: Getting through the Tomb of Curses
PostPosted: Mon Feb 16, 2009 2:16 am 
Was lookin at the monk class and wondering if the WIS AC bonus stacks with DEX bonus to AC. I think it does but thought i would ask to be sure.


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 Post subject: Re: Getting through the Tomb of Curses
PostPosted: Mon Feb 16, 2009 11:43 am 
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D'oh wrote:
Was lookin at the monk class and wondering if the WIS AC bonus stacks with DEX bonus to AC. I think it does but thought i would ask to be sure.

Yes, it does. Monks still can end up with a relatively low AC, so make sure you get some protective items.

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 Post subject: Re: Getting through the Tomb of Curses
PostPosted: Sun Feb 22, 2009 11:42 pm 
Can a hat of disguise be used to help you blend into the background and help your hide skill like a chameleon? cos if you can make a battle axe like a dagger can you make you and your items all black to help hide in the dark?
If under the effects of darkvision spell are you still blinded if exposed to bright light, and if you can, can you light up a sunrod with your eyes closed to negate being blinded by that light?


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 Post subject: Re: Getting through the Tomb of Curses
PostPosted: Mon Feb 23, 2009 12:42 am 
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D'oh wrote:
Can a hat of disguise be used to help you blend into the background and help your hide skill like a chameleon? cos if you can make a battle axe like a dagger can you make you and your items all black to help hide in the dark?
If under the effects of darkvision spell are you still blinded if exposed to bright light, and if you can, can you light up a sunrod with your eyes closed to negate being blinded by that light?

A Hat of Disguise gives you a bonus to the Disguise skill, which is all about looking like other people. I doubt that it will help you blend into the background. You may be better off with a cloak of elvenkind, which is marginally more expensive. If you really feel the need for the disguise bonus, get dust of illusion.

The presence of light does not spoil darkvision.

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 Post subject: Re: Getting through the Tomb of Curses
PostPosted: Mon Feb 23, 2009 2:37 am 
I would of thought going from one spectrum of vision to another would cause some disruption to that persons sight, if just to adjust???? Just sounds alittle strange to me that all.
The spell discription of disguise self say the you can make yourself and belongings change as you like, but the touch and sound of your thing remained the same, so if it stay in the spells parameters. Night time i could make myself all black and should there by gain a bonus to my hide skill if its dark. I might jus be thinkin outside the box on this, but by doing so im following the discription of the spell and trying to be clever as every PC should.
Sean if your reading please respond and let us know what you think on this m8


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 Post subject: Re: Getting through the Tomb of Curses
PostPosted: Mon Feb 23, 2009 9:26 am 
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D'oh wrote:
I would of thought going from one spectrum of vision to another would cause some disruption to that persons sight, if just to adjust???? Just sounds alittle strange to me that all.
The spell discription of disguise self say the you can make yourself and belongings change as you like, but the touch and sound of your thing remained the same, so if it stay in the spells parameters. Night time i could make myself all black and should there by gain a bonus to my hide skill if its dark. I might jus be thinkin outside the box on this, but by doing so im following the discription of the spell and trying to be clever as every PC should.
Sean if your reading please respond and let us know what you think on this m8

I'm not sure what rationale the D&D creators put behind the darkvision to normal vision transition, but the rules say there's no penalty.
As for Disguise, I guess it'll be up to the DM - but in principle, it could work. Note that for things that can see in the dark, black may not be the best option - a mix of mid-greys might be better. Personally, I wouldn't treat that sort of thing as a disguise, so you may find you don't get the +10 bonus from the magic item, but some circumstance bonus of 2 or 4 for being the right colour.

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 Post subject: Re: Getting through the Tomb of Curses
PostPosted: Mon Feb 23, 2009 12:29 pm 
thanks Altair-the-Vexed for your time and input!!! :) :) :) :) :) :)


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 Post subject: Re: Getting through the Tomb of Curses
PostPosted: Mon Feb 23, 2009 1:53 pm 
I know that whenever you bring real-life science into a fantasy discussion, god kills a catgirl or something, but there's no reason why darkvision and normal vision can't coexist in the same eyes.

Your own eyes right now contain both rods (black and white for low-light vision) and cones (colour, for well-lit vision), so introducing (magically or otherwise) a third kind of receptor that works on whatever spectrum darkvision uses shouldn't be a problem at all.


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 Post subject: Re: Getting through the Tomb of Curses
PostPosted: Mon Feb 23, 2009 3:02 pm 
Im not saying its a problem, just that your eyes need time to adjust. For example when you go from being in a brightly lit room to the dark of night you cant see as well till your eyes adjust to the new conditions, so your sight is impaired for a short time.


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 Post subject: Re: Getting through the Tomb of Curses
PostPosted: Mon Feb 23, 2009 3:09 pm 
Im just thinking tacticaly thats all. If you can surprise someone that can see in the dark with a bright light that you are prepared for, but they are not then you gain an advantage over that person for a short time till there vision adjust to the new conditions is what im saying. Hope you are seeing the point im trying to make


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 Post subject: Re: Getting through the Tomb of Curses
PostPosted: Mon Feb 23, 2009 4:12 pm 
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D'oh wrote:
Im just thinking tacticaly thats all. If you can surprise someone that can see in the dark with a bright light that you are prepared for, but they are not then you gain an advantage over that person for a short time till there vision adjust to the new conditions is what im saying. Hope you are seeing the point im trying to make

It seems to me that what you're proposing would be similar to the effects of the spell Flare, which dazzles a creature for a minute. In the case of a sunrod or similar light, the duration would no doubt be shorter, but perhaps the effect would be the same. At least, that's what I'd rule - it'll be up to your DM in the Tomb...

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