Author Topic: Anima Mage entry shenanigans  (Read 5228 times)

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Tshern

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Anima Mage entry shenanigans
« on: June 08, 2009, 09:16:28 PM »
Like always when I post around here, I expect my trick to be shot down. Nevertheless, I have been correct a few times, so let's hope I nail it again.

Essentially, I am very new to the world of Tome of Magic, but I stumbled across this trick.

Ingredients
-Bind vestige feat
-Improved binding feat
-Martial study (Devoted spirit maneuver X) feat
-Anima Mage prestige class
-Wizard base class

Take the prerequisite skills, go into Anima Mage as a level 3 Wizard without losing a single caster level. What is the quirk you might think, so here it comes:

Quote from: Soul Binding Bonus class feature of Anima Mage
At each anima mage level, your soul binding ability improves as if you had also gained a level in the binder class. Your anima mage levels and binder levels stack for the purpose of determining your bonus on binding checks, the effectiveness of your vestige granted abilities, your ability to bind higher-level vestiges, and the number of vestiges you can bind

With Improved binding the EBL of the build should be 15, even though you can only bind 5th level vestiges, as you only have ten levels in Anima Mage, which is the source that actually gives bonus to Sould Binding.

Not groundbreaking, but does it work?
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dither

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Re: Anima Mage entry shenanigans
« Reply #1 on: June 08, 2009, 09:31:08 PM »
Hm, I think I might've seen something like this before.

So (assuming no flaws), you pick up Martial Study:Devoted Spirit (for Intimidate) and Bind Vestige as a 1st-level human wizard.

At 3rd level, you pick up Improved Binding, and at 4th level, you go Anima Mage.

Mm, question. Do you use flaws to pick up a Metamagic feat?

I guess the next question:

Quote from: Tome of Magic, Bind Vestige feat, p. 73
Special: Characters who have the ability to bind vestiges through other means (such as the soul binding class feature) cannot take this feat. If you become a binder after taking the feat, you lose its benefit.

How would you handle this?

...

edit: My thoughts, after a couple moments of pondering, are thus: when you gain your first level of Anima Mage, you gain the ability to bind a vestige, therefore losing the effects of the feat. Since you can no longer bind 2nd-level vestiges, you no longer qualify for the PrC.
« Last Edit: June 08, 2009, 09:34:28 PM by dither »
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Tshern

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Re: Anima Mage entry shenanigans
« Reply #2 on: June 08, 2009, 09:37:34 PM »
An excellent find with that quote. The build, however, never takes a level in the Binder class at all. Nevertheless, the feat says it cannot be taken if I have the ability to bind vestiges... Most annoying.

And I thought of Martial study at level one, but it doesn't work as the Wizard doesn't qualify for any maneuvers at that point. Also, I missed the metamagic requirement and even Metamagic storm doesn't work. It would, as such, seem that the build can enter Anima Mage after level five if it substitutes Martial study for a random metamagic feat.

I still have to find myself a way to get over the Bind vestige mess.
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Slaughterhouserock

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Re: Anima Mage entry shenanigans
« Reply #3 on: June 08, 2009, 10:29:56 PM »
Correct me if I'm wrong, but I remember reading somewhere about how a PrC can qualify for itself(in terms of losing abilities that would normally disqualify you for said PrC after entry into it).  If that's the case, then the Improved Binding feat should allow it to work once you lose access to the Bind Vestige feat by making your BL 3 from the first level of Anima Mage.  It's iffy though, since you lose access to the feat that got you into the PrC at the same time you would gain a BL from the PrC.
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Akalsaris

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Re: Anima Mage entry shenanigans
« Reply #4 on: June 08, 2009, 10:32:41 PM »
Well, RAW I think that since you're not taking binder you wouldn't lose the feat's benefits, but RAI it's pretty obvious that you would lose the feat, as well as your class benefits from Anima Mage.  

For what it's worth, I think the trick is relatively balanced gameplay-wise - you're trading away 2 feat slots for a caster level, and are entering the PrC at the same time as somebody why used precocious apprentice to enter.  It's something I would probably houserule to allow in a decently high-powered game.

dither

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Re: Anima Mage entry shenanigans
« Reply #5 on: June 08, 2009, 10:53:38 PM »
If that's the case, then the Improved Binding feat should allow it to work once you lose access to the Bind Vestige feat by making your BL 3 from the first level of Anima Mage.  It's iffy though, since you lose access to the feat that got you into the PrC at the same time you would gain a BL from the PrC.

You get 2nd-level vestiges at Binder 4, which you don't have from Anima Mage +2.

And I thought of Martial study at level one, but it doesn't work as the Wizard doesn't qualify for any maneuvers at that point. Also, I missed the metamagic requirement and even Metamagic storm doesn't work. It would, as such, seem that the build can enter Anima Mage after level five if it substitutes Martial study for a random metamagic feat.

The Illithid Heritage feat also grants Intimidate as a class skill (requires at least 1 pp).

Also consider the Human Paragon which lets you pick 10 class skills (1 of which you can make a perma-class skill; could be Intimidate) and provides a +1 bonus to spellcaster level and a bonus feat at 2nd level.


edit: You might not be able to pull off early-entry as easily as all that, but you might be able to produce a fun and/or viable build.
« Last Edit: June 08, 2009, 11:00:50 PM by dither »
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Tshern

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Re: Anima Mage entry shenanigans
« Reply #6 on: June 09, 2009, 01:38:39 AM »
Human Paragon loses a caster level though, so it is not any better than taking a level of Binder.

And yes, I agree. A fun build is still very much doable regardless of how one reads the rules (I still believe I could qualify with Bind vestige+Improved binding), it's just that the build with a single Binder level is already well-known and I thought I might have something new here. Requires the DM to rule me out, it seems, but still.

Thanks for the feedback.
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FearlessFreddy

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Bard entry
« Reply #7 on: June 11, 2009, 07:47:30 PM »
Apologies if this is thread hijacking, but it fits the thread's idea so here goes.

The setting: [spoiler]So our DM starts a new game and I decide to play a bard, something I had never played before.  The setting being FR, I choose Star Elf, and anticipating all kinds of fun, choose Otherworldly and Precocious Apprentice (Alter Self).

I know, cheesy.  Anyways.  Not exactly sure what he's gonna do because the party composition was unknown, I boost CHA and keep all other stats lowish but decent (12-14 range).  Also, I equip him with a bow and blade for the same reason.

Turns out that the others play a RVK tripper, a goliath barbarian charger, a god wizard, a lesser drow gish and twf swift hunter.  No range, and through some unfathomable luck, the bard actually holds his own using his bow.  It also appears that a ranged combatant is needed for the group.[/spoiler]

My problem is how to build a decent archer with such a feat-starved start.  Also, I want to maximize the use of the otherwise cool but completely unrelated starting feats.  In comes the Anima Mage class (with a twist)!

The twist is convincing the dm to accept the planing domain for some elven deity.  Otherwise, I may have to swallow some pill and find a RP reason to worship some unrelated god (Gond, perhaps...).  In that case, the Elf domain would be swapped with something else.

LevelClassFeats and Stuff
1Bard 1Precocious Apprentice, Otherworldly
2Binder 1Precise Shot (From Binding Leraje)
3Cloistered Cleric 1Improved Binding, Extend Spell (Planning Domain), PBS (Elf Domain), Knowledge Devotion
4-10Anima Mage 1-7Persistent Spell at 6th, Need ideas for feat at 9
10-11Sublime Chord 1-2
12-14Anima Mage 8-10Need ideas for feat at 12
15-20Not sureNeed ideas for feats at 15 and 18

Overall, I'm happy with the turnaround I was able to find, but as you can see, it's not complete yet and I am unsure as to what to take for feats (rapid shot somewhere, I guess?).  At level 10, he will be able to persist 2 spells per day.  Pretty cool!

Basically, I am fishing for ideas for the remaining feats, as well as the filler class (I could always continue with SC levels, I guess, but this is the min-max board...).  Also, how do I offset the more-than crappy BAB?  The DM has accepted partial BAB, but even then, this still ends up at +10 BAB at 20th.

dither

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Re: Bard entry
« Reply #8 on: June 11, 2009, 07:55:01 PM »
Overall, I'm happy with the turnaround I was able to find, but as you can see, it's not complete yet and I am unsure as to what to take for feats (rapid shot somewhere, I guess?).  At level 10, he will be able to persist 2 spells per day.  Pretty cool!

Basically, I am fishing for ideas for the remaining feats, as well as the filler class (I could always continue with SC levels, I guess, but this is the min-max board...).  Also, how do I offset the more-than crappy BAB?  The DM has accepted partial BAB, but even then, this still ends up at +10 BAB at 20th.

You've got some cleric in there, and you've already planned for Persist Spell -- why not use some DMM for handy spells to give yourself a good attack bonus all day long?

(DMM and Extra Turning could easily figure in there.)

edit: Is there any way to get your arrows as touch attacks? That could definitely help your attacks against armored foes.
"Stuck between a rogue and a bard place."

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"Vegeta! What does the scouter say about Dither's power level?"
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Quote from: Anklebite
Quote from: dither
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FearlessFreddy

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Re: Anima Mage entry shenanigans
« Reply #9 on: June 11, 2009, 07:57:42 PM »
Would that imply finishing off with Mystic Theurge to get something higher than 1st level spells?

dither

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Re: Anima Mage entry shenanigans
« Reply #10 on: June 11, 2009, 08:08:58 PM »
Would that imply finishing off with Mystic Theurge to get something higher than 1st level spells?

*Shrug* Maybe. Unfortunately, I've been dabbling in too many systems lately that I'm really the worst one to go to for CO advice, but I just thought I'd throw that one out there. And actually, there are plenty of excellent 1st-level cleric spells, but Mystic Theurge sounds good. Can never get too much of that PrC, IMO.
"Stuck between a rogue and a bard place."

vanity
Read my webcomic!
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[spoiler]
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Quote from: Flay Crimsonwind
"Vegeta! What does the scouter say about Dither's power level?"
It's over nine thousand!

Quote from: Bauglir
Quote from: Anklebite
Quote from: dither
Well blow me down! :P
A SECTION OF THE CAVERN HAS COLLAPSED!
dither, Miner, has died after colliding with an obstacle!
[/spoiler]

Brainpiercing

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Re: Anima Mage entry shenanigans
« Reply #11 on: June 12, 2009, 07:11:12 PM »
To get back to the OP:

I don't think you can take "improved Binding" if you only got Binding from "Bind Vestige", but I'm not sure. From a literal interpretation you need the "Soul Binding" class feature for Improved Binding, because Bind Vestige does not replicate this. (In the description it says "unlike the Soul Binding class feature..."). For the Anima Mage you only have to be able to bind a second level vestige. So you would have to take: Bind Vestige, Improved Bind Vestige, and THEN you could enter Anima Mage. However, you then immediately lose the benefits of your two entry feats, because you then gain an actual Binder Level of 1 and the Soul Binding class feature. So you can only enter if you take Improved Binding on the same level in which you enter. Which... is a bind! :banghead

If a DM is willing to forgive your twisted logic chain you can still enter at 6 and then retrain your entry feats, though, thereby keeping full CL.



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Re: Anima Mage entry shenanigans
« Reply #12 on: June 13, 2009, 10:32:10 PM »
^Well you can take those 2 at first level, along with precocious apprentice, assuming you have 2 flaws. At 3rd level you could take Anima Mage and improved Binding and then retrain the Bind Vestige and Improved Bind Vestige feats.

PlzBreakMyCampaign

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Re: Anima Mage entry shenanigans
« Reply #13 on: June 17, 2009, 06:23:41 PM »
Yup it works. Yup its not groundbreaking.

As far as binder advancement off the feat. Two interpretations, either:
   Since the feat only gives one ability, and not further abilities, you can bind the higher level vestiges... you just don't gain their abilities due to the fact you use the binding ability of the feat
   Or you take the reference to the binder class very literally and recalculate your EBL based off how anima mage tells you to. This causes a qualify-disqualify infinite loop and the universe explodes
   Or you could follow the sage as has been mentioned.

Most of the sage stuff no one could care about, and #2 looks pretty bad  :lol so #1 is what I have always thought.
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