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Author Topic: Pathfinder artificer vs eberron artificer  (Read 10003 times)
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borg286
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« on: August 03, 2010, 12:29:13 AM »

The pathfinder artificer is found http://www.d20pfsrd.com/classes/3rd-party-classes/artificer  and sadly is the closest to the original artificer made for pathfinder
I'm going to assume that those reading know of the eberron artificer.
I'm going to try and summarize the differences and what things that made the original artificer broken are still in the pathfinder version and what things they tried to fix.

Infusions are replaced with Weird Science spells, a fast progression to 3rd level spells(4th level spells recieved at 11th, yuck) taken from all spell lists ("both arcane and divine") that take 4 hours/spell level to infuse into a receptacle item.  One can then use this spell 1+ceil(1/2 level) times / day.  After that you can run on it's fumes at a UMD check of 20 + cumulative 1/extended use.  Implying that with a high enough bonus you could keep using the item.  

Weird Science also alleviates the problem artificers had of their effectiveness being greatly dependent on gold.  Now they can cast their own spells w/o needing to spend XP(spell storing item) and it can be used by others.  I do miss bane at level 1.

Item creation's UMD checks are replaced by a single craft check making them Int based instead of Cha based.  He also get the same item creation feats except scribe scroll is at 2nd.

Retain essence is turned into salvage.  Instead of sucking out XP he sucks out GP meaning that no matter what form of loot the DM throws at you an artificer can turn it into the loot he wants.

Metamagic spelltrigger is simply renamed, and thus still broken.


The things that made the artificer tier 1 were
  • versatility through any spell and he still has that.  He still can make scrolls of spells 2 levels before the caster can cast them
  • Metamagic spell trigger for empowering blasting spells is still possible, but without the metamagic item infusion less is possible.  What's the worst that can be done with it now?
  • Breaking the WBL guidlines:  He can do it even better due to the ability to turn a wand of level 1 crap to a wand of level 1 win instead of needing to sell it at who knows what rate?  I'm honestly asking.
  • The original artificer had a few infusions that made life great but now is missing them (Armor enhancement(Healing armor ftw), Metamagic item for 46d6 wands of uberness

With the "Weird Science" mechanic what would be the best uses of level 1-3 spells being able to be combined into 1 item (fire a wand that has 4 spells infused into it and all fire when the item is activated)?

With pathfinder, how would you get an superior UMD check, at least for 1 encounter?

I'm having a hard time seeing how the items you make with Weird Science wouldn't be classified as "spell trigger item" and would thus be qualified for a metamagic feat.  This class feature(Metamagic Science) uses up charges, but that wording is not used in Weird science, instead it uses "activations" but functions as charges.  Expending these charges should count towards the cumulative stretching the item once these activations/charges are used up.  Thoughts?

How long does the item made with Weird Magic last?  In the example it says a certian item took 24 hours to make and could be used 4 times / day, implying that he made it once and could use it every day up to 4 times w/o making checks.  How many items could he make?  Does having the item which contains a 3rd level spell consume your 3rd level slot every day that you use the item or something?
« Last Edit: August 03, 2010, 01:08:09 AM by borg286 » Logged
Wubs
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« Reply #1 on: August 03, 2010, 02:26:18 PM »

Quote
With the "Weird Science" mechanic what would be the best uses of level 1-3 spells being able to be combined into 1 item (fire a wand that has 4 spells infused into it and all fire when the item is activated)?

I like that, since a "Deathray" would be pretty cool. 

Offhand, at the low levels, I'd probably do buffs or disable effects, since the uses aren't quite as many per day as you'd like and your UMD score might not be enough for the extra uses.  For example, being able to buff yourself with say Bite of the Wererat, Fist of Stone, Elation, etc, would mean after the first round of combat, you could have a bite attack, a slam attack, your normal one, and +8 str/dex, and +2 con for the fight.

Typically, this is because, well, a low level damage spell, or even battlefield control spell that only lasts a little bit of time, is sort of a waste.

Later on, as you get more weird science, you can combo them together...  True strike + touch attacks = single target pain.  Entangle spell + Ref save based spells (fireball, lightning, etc) = Pain in an area, etc.

Quote
With pathfinder, how would you get an superior UMD check, at least for 1 encounter?

Aid another is always a good one, which hasn't been taken out.  Not sure how I'd do it, but 1 rank in it as a non trained skill, as well as moderate charisma, masterwork tool and a +UMD item = good aid another check, they'd need +7 total, as a roll of 1 = fail for UMD.  Maybe you could hirelings with tower shields that aid you, leadership cronies, or even animals trained to do so if your GM is lenient.

Or since weird science technically makes you a caster, obtain familiar = awesome then.

Quote
How long does the item made with Weird Magic last?  In the example it says a certian item took 24 hours to make and could be used 4 times / day, implying that he made it once and could use it every day up to 4 times w/o making checks.  How many items could he make?  Does having the item which contains a 3rd level spell consume your 3rd level slot every day that you use the item or something?

"it requires a Use Magic Device  roll at DC 15 to activate (a failed roll indicates that the device fails to activate for that user, and a roll of 1 means that the device breaks down for good). "

"If the device is used more times than allowed (by anyone), it requires a Use Magic Device  skill check with a DC equal starting at 20 and rising by 1 every additional time the device is used. A failed roll means that the device breaks down and may not be used again (the artificer will have to build another). "

So 2 things, 1 roll of UMD from an ally = breaks item.  Or you fail after using the unreliable option.  Either or, means you need to remake it.

No idea on the weird science item limitation to be honest, it'd be handy to cherry pick a bunch of spells though and combine em for Weird science like that.

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borg286
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« Reply #2 on: August 03, 2010, 02:35:21 PM »

http://www.d20pfsrd.com/skills/use-magic-device says you can't aid another.  The only way I can see it working, even if you could aid another, would be out of combat for abusing a spell till it broke, then remake it that night.

I do like the attack + buff for encounter long fun.
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borg286
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« Reply #3 on: August 03, 2010, 02:56:47 PM »

Items like A potion of Guidance of the Avatar might work well as a one-shot. +20 competence bonus, only 300 GP for a 2nd level potion:
http://www.wizards.com/dnd/article.a...sb/sb20010504a
but it's only a 1 time shot.  Are there similar skill boosting spells that last for a number of rounds?  
So far I've found this: http://forums.ddo.com/showthread.php?t=206255

I can see these 1 shot boosts really helping out when you've stacked tons into a wierd magic item.  Each time you use it, though, the DC goes up by the total of the levels of the spells embedded inside.  But with a +20 who cares.
« Last Edit: August 03, 2010, 03:05:28 PM by borg286 » Logged
borg286
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« Reply #4 on: August 03, 2010, 04:09:27 PM »

Ok, I'm going to try and break this weird magic mechanic.  This is at level 5 with available spells (5x1st, 2x2nd, 2x3rd)
Imagine 2 inventions(weird magic items),
gun1 with 2x1st level spells and a second level spell which can be cast 4(1+5/2) times / day. 
gun2 with 3 first level spells a second and 2 third.

gun1 is a bootstrapping gun2.  It has as a second  level spell Guidance of the Avatar to give our next UMD check +20, the first level spells are a debuffing battlefield control and the other is a buff of some sort.
gun2 has the same level 2 spell as well as some other big stuff.
Assume that we've run out of uses on gun2 from our first battle somehow.  We need a 25 UMD check to activate gun2.  At level 5 this is trivial.
our next attack we try and activate it and succeed casting Guidance of the Avatar for the next time we run it, but this time the DC is 25+6, and the next time is 25+12...
The problem I see with it is that the DC we left gun 2 at starts at that DC for our next encounter.  Basically we just need all our guns to have Guidance of the Avatar in it and thus we can keep going as long as we have a bootstrapping gun that isn't expended.
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borg286
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« Reply #5 on: August 03, 2010, 07:00:03 PM »

I've run the math on this and this bootstrapping breaks the class if you allow spells like wieldskill(+10 to a skill for minutes / casting) and Guidance of the Avatar(+20 on a single check).
With an item familiar a level 5 artificer can have 8(ranks)+8(item familiar)+3(cha)+5(glasses)+2(masterwork item) +2(used it before) + 2(custom UMD item) = base of +30 UMD.
Using the bootstrap invention of (wieldskill(level 1 cleric) + battlefield control(1st level) + Guidance of the Avatar(2nd level)) to start every encounter off (freely use it 4(1+5/2) times / day and then force cast it 2 more times and it might break after that).
After our bootstrapping we have a +60 UMD.  
The following chart has UMD bonus on top, and number of spells in the second gun which must have Guidance of the Avatar in it's second level slot going vertically.  the cell is how many extra uses you can force out of it past what it was meant for with the only chance of failure being a natural roll of 1
     48 50 52 54 56 58 60 62 64 66 68
2   13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23
3   9   9   10 11 11 12 13 13 14 15 15
4   7   7   8   8   9   9   10 10 11 11 12
5   5   6   6   7   7   7   8   8   9   9   9
6   5   5   5   6   6   6   7   7   7   8   8
7   4   4   5   5   5   5   6   6   6   7   7
8   4   4   4   4   5   5   5   5   6   6   6
9   3   3   4   4   4   4   5   5   5   5   5
10 3   3   3   4   4   4   4   4   5   5   5
11 3   3   3   3   3   4   4   4   4   4   5
12 3   3   3   3   3   3   4   4   4   4   4
This means that if we wanted to we could have an invention that contains 2x3rd level spells, the obligatory Guidance of the Avatar and 3 first level spells at 4+7 times / day at 5th level.  
glasses: http://zyanya.wikidot.com/face
« Last Edit: August 03, 2010, 07:04:08 PM by borg286 » Logged
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« Reply #6 on: August 03, 2010, 08:44:24 PM »

Quote
Combining multiple magical effects into a single device means that both effects function simultaneously upon activation (effectively casting two or more spells at once) -- but such devices are even more unstable than usual: The Use Magic Device check for extra activations starts at DC 25 + the number of effects used, and goes up for each additional usage by the number of effects used.

According to this I can have all my Weird Science on 1 item and cast them all at the same time? And I can cast them 1 + 1/2 Artificer Levels before making any checks at all? This guy can Nova faster then a Psion! Now how effective a Nova from this guy can be is another question indeed.

It is very similar to Ebb Artificer, and while we lose some of the godly Infusion Shenanigans like Baneing a Weapon, The mere fact that I can have all my buff spells on a single item and able to be cast all at once is truely amazing. By 5 level you won't even need to worry about UMD Checks, and quite frankly we can boost that so easily so it does not even matter then.

I approve of this class.


I feel like I am misreading the class somewhere...
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borg286
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« Reply #7 on: August 03, 2010, 10:06:42 PM »

But you're like an erudite, locking yourself into a set of spells when you make the invention, only instead of freeing yourself up at the dawn of a new day, you free yourself up after 4 hours * (total spell levels of all spells in invention)
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« Reply #8 on: August 03, 2010, 10:14:36 PM »

This Artificer is almost just as effective at crafting other Magical Items as the original, minus the crafting pool. As far as I can tell anyway. UMD will fill in the gaps left by having a set 'spell list'. For the most part.
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« Reply #9 on: October 06, 2010, 06:37:39 PM »

I know this is thread resurrection, but I thought I'd point out a few things that I've had to dig around to find.  

FROM THE ERRATA / FAQ THREAD (this is on the Paizo messageboards, from the author of Tome of Secrets, over several pages):
1) The Artificer doesn't seem to have a primary ability score. You could argue that it's intelligence, due to their focus on crafting and the craft skills, but really, it's never mentioned.

I envisioned them as a sort of Jack of All Trades -- but yes, with the concentration on Craft, Intelligence makes the most sense.

1b) Extending from that, what ability score does an artificer use when using her Weird Science abilities? Is it like a magic item, which uses the lowest possible DC? Do you have to rely on multiple ability scores (Wisdom/Charisma/Intelligence) depending on where you took the spell? Can you rely on a single attribute chosen at 1st level?

It's handled like a magic item, using the lowest possible DC.

2) Weird science items rely on the artificer's "caster level" when activating them, but is that set when you USE the item, or when the item is created?

The caster level is determined when the item is created, not when used.

3) Do artificers suffer any failure related consequences from working in armor heavier than light? If not, then why aren't they granted higher proficiencies? It seems that an artificer would have a lot to gain from dipping into a class like Fighter.

No, they don't suffer from failure-related consequences in armor -- but they weren't granted more proficiencies as a reflection of their academic nature. (So yes, an artificer/fighter combination would be a good one.)

4) You stated that you didn't want to have a core class reliant on spending GP to gain uses of their class abilities. I understand giving the characters free access to Master Craftsman and every magic item creation feat in the PHB, but they gain no discount to using any of them (also fine, but it makes me wonder). Plus, they gain metamagic feats and zero ability to utilize them beyond spending spell charges (again with the GP). What's the deal here? Why weren't artificers given the ability to utilize their metamagic feats in their weird science ability?

I felt that adding metamagic feats to weird science items would make them too overpowering (since they don't use charges, and the balancing factor of those feats are that they burn through multiple charges in use).

5) Many spells appear on multiple spell lists, sometimes at differing levels (the Ranger and Paladin jump to mind). Is it up to the DM to decide if this is ok, or should the player automatically use the lowest/highest version available?

The artificer can use a spell at whatever level it appears, even if it appears at a higher level on another list -- that's a reflection of their versitility.

ABOUT THE TABLE:
The part where you're making the mistake is in thinking that the "spell list" on the table is per day -- it isn't. That table entry is labeled Weird Science Inventions -- which means that at any given time, an Artificer may only have inventions that total the number of spell effects listed.

For example: A 4th level artificer may only invent Weird Science that emulate the effects of 3 different 1st level spells, and 1 2nd level spell. Whether that is 4 different inventions, or fewer inventions combining spell effects -- that's all they get. They cannot "swap out" spells -- what they invent is all they have. They cannot "mass produce" items by cranking out Cure Light devices every 4 hours, for example. They make one, and that's it.

If a device becomes unusable, they can build another (replicating the same effect), or invent a new one (choosing a different spell effect).

They do not expend GP to do this -- it's "MacGyvered" as Charles noted. (JWO note - I totally did not get the table as being the maximum number of gizmos / spells in a gizmo either)

Question about the artificer. Can they use wands as normal such as a wand of cure light or must they make a UMD roll every time? It says they have acess to divine and arcane spells up to 4th level. But from previous discussions earlier in this thread. It seems they just emulate the spells effect but they don't really know the spell. So can they use spell trigger items?

Yes, they can use spell trigger items. As the description on page 458 of the Pathfinder Core Book says, "This is the case even for a character who can't actually cast spells, such as a 3rd level Paladin." We figure if the spell-casting knowledge of the class allows a non-casting Paladin to use spell trigger items, the emulative knowledge of an artificer applies as well.

Can the artificer cast spells from scrolls? She can create scrolls at second level, but she can't read magic. Does this mean she needs to make a Use Magic Device check or that she can only use scrolls she has created herself?

Yes, she can use scrolls. A Use Magic Device check is required.

If she can cast a spell from scroll she didn't create, can she cast spells from a scroll beyond her current level (assuming the spell isn't higher than 4th level)? Can she cast spells from scrolls if she doesn't know what they do (i.e., if they haven't been Identified)?

As with any use of a scroll, an attempt to cast a spell of a higher level will require a caster level check (DC = spell's caster level +1). This would include spells of a higher level than the artificer would normally have access to.

The artificer could not cast from an unidentified scroll, since deciphering is required for activation. (as per page 490 of The Pathfinder Roleplaying Game).

The description under the feat Use Magic Device on page 109 of the Pathfinder Core Book says, "Decipher a Written Spell: This usage works just like deciphering a written spell with the Spellcraft skill, except that the DC is 5 points higher. Deciphering a written spell requires 1 minute of concentration." But the description of the Spellcraft skill on page 106 says, "This skill is also used to identify the properties of magic items in your possession through the use of spells such as detect magic and identify." neither of which the artificer can cast.

Deciphering with UMD 'works just like' deciphering with Spellcraft, not 'using the same requirements as' deciphering with Spellcraft. The spells are not a requirement for the UMD use.

So, the short of it: Weird Science uses the crappiest save DC possible for the item, so those non-buffing options really are only good for the first 2-3 levels, and you can put any spell from any list in there (hey, hey, here comes the L1 Haste machine).  Also, that table is supposed to be the total number of inventions you can have with the stored spell at any given time.  The author has clarified here that you have to break an item (presumably via UMD) to make another one: seems reasonable, if silly ("What are you doing with that death ray, Magnum?!"  "I'm getting all the magic out of it so I can safely dismantle it."  Rest of party looks at each other a little worried as Magnum continues to blast lightening into the sky...).

I also emailed the author about something specific I thought was missing: they no longer have trapfinding, and this was intentional.
« Last Edit: October 06, 2010, 06:45:10 PM by jameswilliamogle » Logged

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