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Author Topic: Help me understand INcarnum  (Read 1252 times)
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Alastar
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« on: August 24, 2009, 07:46:25 PM »

I don't get incarnum

I really tried, i read the book and all, i just don't get it.

There must be something wrong with me.

So can someone explain it to me?


I mean, soulmelds, what are those, are those things i pick in the soulmeld list?  And then i bind them to any chakra point i want?  and then i can flow essentia in there?  But that means that a totemist only gets 5 options of soulmelds?  and like 5 essentia to put in them?  what's good about it then?


Anyone care to explain?  I read the Sinfire titan guide, but i don't really understand the mechanics behind it, so i didn't get much.
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Sinfire Titan
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« Reply #1 on: August 24, 2009, 08:02:29 PM »

Quote
Each Soulmeld acts like a "larval" form of a magic item. The character's meldshaper level is the caster level of the Soulmeld for all purposes and intents (such as suppressing them via Dispel Magic), and Soulmelds react to spells the same way magic items do (the exception is Sundering or damaging them, Soulmelds have no HP and no Hardness, and are effectively impossible to break through Sundering or similar abilities).

Essenita is like the enhancement bonus you normally put on armor and weapons. Only every soulmeld grants something different for investing essentia into it. The meldshaper has an essentia pool (which is the total amount of essentia he has, including what's been invested in the soulmelds/items) and can use a swift action to "move" essentia between his pool and any number of his soulmelds or class features (he can't do this with feats, save for the Cobalt Rage feat, but that requires a prestige class to do). He has a limit to how much essentia he can invest in a single soulmeld. Typically, it's his Character level divided by 4, but some effects can improve this value (a feat, a magic item, and two class features).

The maximum essentia capacity a standard 20th level Incarnate or Totemist character can have is 8 (Totemists can exceed this value, but only temporarily). The meldshaper doesn't need to meet the maximum capacity in order to invest in a soulmeld (he can have as little in each soulmeld as he chooses, so long as he doesn't exceed the capacity).


Chakra binds are where the system gets a little tricky. Normally, shaping a soulmeld makes it hover above the corresponding magic item slot (the Bluesteel Bracers, for example, occupy the same slot that bracers of Armor do). While a soulmeld is not bound to a Chakra, the body slot is considered open. As long as it is open, you can gain the benefits of every soulmeld or magic item that occupies that slot without penalty (but you don't get the benefits for binding the soulmelds to that chakra).

Upon binding a soulmeld to a chakra, the meldshaper effectively closes that body slot for the next 24 hours. No other soulmeld or magic item may occupy that body slot unless the item says ignores the Chakra bind restriction or the meldshaper has the Split Chakra/Double Chakra feat. This is akin to donning a magic item (you can't gain the benefit of a Monk's Belt and a Belt of Giant Strength without a special item or feat being involved).

There's a limit to Chakra binds, however: No individual soulmeld may be bound to more than one chakra at a time. One class feature allows you to bypass this restriction, but even that is restricted in use.

There are 11 chakra slots. Crown, feet, hands, arms, brow, shoulders, throat, waist, heart, totem, and soul. Meldshapers gain access to new chakra slots as they gain levels. The most powerful slots (arguably) are the Heart, Soul, and Totem slots.

Each chakra slot corresponds to a magic item body slot (except the Totem):
Crown: Head or Helm
Feet: Boots
Hands: Gloves, or gauntlets
Arms: Bracers
Brow: Eye
Shoulders: Cloaks, capes
Throat: Necklaces, amulets
Waist: Belts, greaves
Heart: Vests
Soul: Armor

The totem is an exception: it has no corresponding magic item slot. It can be anywhere you want it to be, but the soulmeld bound to it must be shaped on another chakra slot (binding a soulmeld to your Totem chakra does not cut off access to any other body slot).


Hope this helps.
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McPoyo
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« Reply #2 on: August 24, 2009, 08:04:33 PM »

Think of it like a Cleric with magic items. Your soulmelds take up space like magic items, except you can power them up by investing essentia in them. Like a cleric with spell preparation, you have access to the whole list of soulmelds, but have to pick and choose each day what to bind (aka, prepare). You do not have to bind a soulmeld when you shape (equip) it, but they become stronger and give you more bonuses if you do. You can bind to any chakra you have access to based on class and level, but each chakra point can only have one soulmeld bound to it.

I'd recommend looking up the two or three CO Diaries on totemists to see how they function in play, too. That helps sometimes.
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They don't/haven't, was the point. 3.5 is as dead as people not liking nice tits.

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Alastar
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« Reply #3 on: August 24, 2009, 08:19:07 PM »

Quote
There's a limit to Chakra binds, however: No individual soulmeld may be bound to more than one chakra at a time. One class feature allows you to bypass this restriction, but even that is restricted in use.

What exactly do you mean by that?

And yes, that helps a lot actually, thanks.
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Sinfire Titan
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« Reply #4 on: August 24, 2009, 09:18:56 PM »

Quote
There's a limit to Chakra binds, however: No individual soulmeld may be bound to more than one chakra at a time. One class feature allows you to bypass this restriction, but even that is restricted in use.

What exactly do you mean by that?

And yes, that helps a lot actually, thanks.

Soulmelds can only occupy a single chakra slot, and no single soulmeld may be bound to two different Chakras. The Totemist has a class feature that allows them to bind any soulmeld currently bound to their Totem chakra to an additional chakra slot. It still costs a Chakra bind to do, but makes soulmelds like the Manticore Belt much more entertaining.

I just wish I could find that one post I made where I accurately describe the entire Meldshaping system using a restaurant as the metaphor. That was one of the few times I rolled an Nat 20 on my Craft: Forums Post check when I spent the IP for being a Factotum.
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Alastar
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« Reply #5 on: August 24, 2009, 09:22:18 PM »

hahahaha I'D love to see that.

But like... can some soulmelds be melded to different chakra points?
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Sinfire Titan
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« Reply #6 on: August 24, 2009, 09:37:18 PM »

hahahaha I'D love to see that.

But like... can some soulmelds be melded to different chakra points?


Some soulmelds list multiple chakras. Those ones can occupy any one of those chakra slots. But no soulmeld can occupy a chakra that isn't listed in the soulmeld itself, and no soulmeld can occupy the Totem chakra without being partially attached to another chakra (this part is weird, just think of it like a 4E shield; you have to have a free hand to hold it, but there's a slot devoted to it specifically).
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Alastar
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« Reply #7 on: August 24, 2009, 10:04:26 PM »

ok ok, i think i'm starting to piece it together.  I'll read some more on it tonight.

Incarnum has a big role in my homebrew, but i don't know the rules for it, figured I,d try to learn them Wink

Thanks a bunch.
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Khorus
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« Reply #8 on: August 24, 2009, 10:14:31 PM »

I had trouble with it at first also, think of soul melds as items instead of spells.
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