Author Topic: Sha'ir is this even playable as written  (Read 2931 times)

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raith0

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Sha'ir is this even playable as written
« on: November 16, 2010, 12:40:39 AM »
so i was thumbing through the dragon compendium looking for something to mess with as i get ready to run the next session for my group.  I start looking at the Sha'ir and it looks like it could be a cool class until you look at how it gets it spells. 

you have to plan extremely in advance make a diplomacy check and then wait minutes per spell and you loose the ability to cast said spell if you dont cast it within 1 hour per class level.  now i know they get more spells known than a sorcerer and the ability to cast spells they dont know if they wait a while and have seen the spell cast and made a spell craft check. 

all in all a interesting idea and probably not a terrible class but im thinking its going to be tier 4 at best even though it gets the sorcerer/Wizard spell list and 9th level spells by way of the casting mechanic being so screwy. 

but has anyone played one or does anyone think its actually playable?

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Re: Sha'ir is this even playable as written
« Reply #1 on: November 16, 2010, 12:50:45 AM »
Not just playable, but highly abusable.  Easily a T1 caster, essentially on-par with an StP Erudite.

fuinjutsu

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Re: Sha'ir is this even playable as written
« Reply #2 on: November 16, 2010, 03:32:40 AM »
The class is horribly written.  It's unclear if you need to retrieve every spell, or only those not on the wiz/sorc list.  If you have to retrieved every spell, how the ^%$&(* do you have time to cast them, let alone adventure with all the time you spend retrieving spells, and the short shelf life they have at lower levels?
Eh, the wizard have more money than them combined, he could in theory just use all his money on a fleet of trained attack mules, but then we aren't playing 3.5 but zergling rushing in Starcraft instead.

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Re: Sha'ir is this even playable as written
« Reply #3 on: November 16, 2010, 03:55:41 AM »
The shelf life is a problem, but it doesn't seem that they're expended until you actually cast them, so you can just retrieve the spells you want at lower levels each hour as you cast them, and if you come across a task that requires a specific spell and you have a minute of free time, then *bam* it's yours.

Once you get past the lower-levels, it gets ridiculous.  Basically you just retrieve spells during the same time that the Wizard or Cleric is spending to prepare theirs (probably less), and then you hold onto it all day just like a prepared spell.  Difference is that you can leave slots un-prepared and easily fill them later.

BruceLeeroy

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Re: Sha'ir is this even playable as written
« Reply #4 on: November 16, 2010, 07:20:34 AM »
The shelf life is a problem, but it doesn't seem that they're expended until you actually cast them, so you can just retrieve the spells you want at lower levels each hour as you cast them, and if you come across a task that requires a specific spell and you have a minute of free time, then *bam* it's yours.

Once you get past the lower-levels, it gets ridiculous.  Basically you just retrieve spells during the same time that the Wizard or Cleric is spending to prepare theirs (probably less), and then you hold onto it all day just like a prepared spell.  Difference is that you can leave slots un-prepared and easily fill them later.

Wizard can do that, too.

raith0

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Re: Sha'ir is this even playable as written
« Reply #5 on: November 16, 2010, 09:02:03 AM »
 If you have to retrieve spells known for casting this can leave you without use to your party at low levels.  when a bad die roll happens.  now at high levels i  know its not going to be a problem and having the ability to cast almost any spell in the game is great, but since most of my groups games happen in the 1-7 level ranges im not sure how good this class can be at those levels in comparison to a sorcerer or wizard

The_Mad_Linguist

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Re: Sha'ir is this even playable as written
« Reply #6 on: November 16, 2010, 09:48:44 AM »
Weird, but ultimately not too broken in either direction.
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Re: Sha'ir is this even playable as written
« Reply #7 on: November 16, 2010, 03:35:17 PM »
The shelf life is a problem, but it doesn't seem that they're expended until you actually cast them, so you can just retrieve the spells you want at lower levels each hour as you cast them, and if you come across a task that requires a specific spell and you have a minute of free time, then *bam* it's yours.

Once you get past the lower-levels, it gets ridiculous.  Basically you just retrieve spells during the same time that the Wizard or Cleric is spending to prepare theirs (probably less), and then you hold onto it all day just like a prepared spell.  Difference is that you can leave slots un-prepared and easily fill them later.

Wizard can do that, too.
Wizard takes an hour to prepare regardless.  This class takes somewhere between a few rounds and 10 minutes.

The_Mad_Linguist

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Re: Sha'ir is this even playable as written
« Reply #8 on: November 16, 2010, 03:36:31 PM »
Wizards take 15 minutes midday.
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Phoenix00

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Re: Sha'ir is this even playable as written
« Reply #9 on: November 16, 2010, 03:39:29 PM »
Wizard takes an hour to prepare regardless.  This class takes somewhere between a few rounds and 10 minutes.

It is more like 15 mins
http://www.d20srd.org/srd/magicOverview/arcaneSpells.htm

Quote
Spell Preparation Time

After resting, a wizard must study her spellbook to prepare any spells that day. If she wants to prepare all her spells, the process takes 1 hour. Preparing some smaller portion of her daily capacity takes a proportionally smaller amount of time, but always at least 15 minutes, the minimum time required to achieve the proper mental state.

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Re: Sha'ir is this even playable as written
« Reply #10 on: November 16, 2010, 03:40:55 PM »
That's what I get for taking those sections of the PHB for granted.

Sobolev

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Re: Sha'ir is this even playable as written
« Reply #11 on: November 16, 2010, 05:21:39 PM »
That's what I get for taking those sections of the PHB for granted.

So, final ranking of this class?  I find it interesting but it sure seems like your Gen has to get every single spell, so even at first level the least amount of time that can take is 8d4+3 rounds for all your spells per day.  If you go crazy retrieving your spells for one day could take...8d6+3 hours, assuming they are all divine (they clearly won't be)

You can get any spell that's either a Sorc/Wizard spell or on one of those domains (I'll need to look in to how juicy the stuff on those lists are) and the domain ones are QUITE unreliable, taking who knows how long to get (1d6+9 hours to get a level 9 cleric spell from a limited list).  I kept searching for a class feature that shortens it later but I didn't seem to find it.

I also wonder about how much optimization it takes to make a DC20 check at first level.  5 Charisma, 4 Ranks is still an 11 or better to get a spell or waste a lot of time at first level.  Luckily you can try again in 1d4+1 Rounds assuming it's one actually on your list.

Any thoughts on where it should go?  My vote is probably low 1 or highish 2, because Arcane spells are only d6+spell level minutes and the diplomacy check is a joke at higher levels.  The low levels likely require some thought, and you're probably not scrounging up combat spells you don't know in combat which requires some foreknowledge of incoming combat (do not get caught asleep).  You effectively know all Sorc/Wiz spells as a Wizard sometimes faster than they do, sometimes slower.  Your class features are mostly garbage but so are Wizards.  You occasionally know a helpful cleric spell.  I think it would take a lot of work, but I think it would be quite good.

Edit: I know what my next experiment shall be!
« Last Edit: November 16, 2010, 05:23:44 PM by Sobolev »
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Quote from: Negative Zero on November 04, 2009, 02:16:14 AM
In my humble opinion, CO is haberdashery. Some say we're mad, but we can all agree we're hatters. Yes, we have potential to make very sophisticated hats, very fancy hats, be they dark or light. But the truth is that the color of the hat does not come from the group of us - our community doesn't directly produce hats. We simply give average head circumferences, list current fashion trends, and point out some shiny, obscure baubles to add to the latest hat line.

fuinjutsu

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Re: Sha'ir is this even playable as written
« Reply #12 on: November 16, 2010, 05:27:33 PM »
It does give DM' of the sort that shouldn't be DM's plenty of opportunity to screw you by waylaying your elemnatl servant though.  Even worse than the classic "demons come in the night and steal your holy symbol"
Eh, the wizard have more money than them combined, he could in theory just use all his money on a fleet of trained attack mules, but then we aren't playing 3.5 but zergling rushing in Starcraft instead.

Sobolev

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Re: Sha'ir is this even playable as written
« Reply #13 on: November 16, 2010, 05:36:23 PM »
It does give DM' of the sort that shouldn't be DM's plenty of opportunity to screw you by waylaying your elemnatl servant though.  Even worse than the classic "demons come in the night and steal your holy symbol"

That's true, but that's shenanigans, and only Kevin's DM would do that.
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Quote from: Negative Zero on November 04, 2009, 02:16:14 AM
In my humble opinion, CO is haberdashery. Some say we're mad, but we can all agree we're hatters. Yes, we have potential to make very sophisticated hats, very fancy hats, be they dark or light. But the truth is that the color of the hat does not come from the group of us - our community doesn't directly produce hats. We simply give average head circumferences, list current fashion trends, and point out some shiny, obscure baubles to add to the latest hat line.

weenog

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Re: Sha'ir is this even playable as written
« Reply #14 on: November 16, 2010, 05:42:01 PM »
the classic "demons come in the night and steal your holy symbol"

This is why you be a cleric of someone who appreciates body modification, and have multiple redundant holy symbols tattooed, branded, and scarred onto yourself.

Bonus, you can make undead cower by brandishing your... self.
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Bauglir

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Re: Sha'ir is this even playable as written
« Reply #15 on: November 16, 2010, 09:23:48 PM »
My main gripe with the class is how much rolling is necessary to actually handle spell preparation. It's as if they made Wizards track what components they have in their pouch. Power-wise, it's probably on par with a Wizard with a shorter work day at lower levels.
So you end up stuck in an endless loop, unable to act, forever.

In retrospect, much like Keanu Reeves.

awaken DM golem

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Re: Sha'ir is this even playable as written
« Reply #16 on: November 16, 2010, 09:56:57 PM »
That's what I get for taking those sections of the PHB for granted.
Nah, it's been a long time. And you've probably had a beer or two since then.
I'm forgetting more basic 4e stuff already, than the furthest out 3e CO stuff.

raith0

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Re: Sha'ir is this even playable as written
« Reply #17 on: November 16, 2010, 11:02:17 PM »
so can a class have multiple tiers?

i honestly think by how easy it would be to get screwed this starts off as a low tier 3 class.  but ends up as a solid tier one.   i may try to get my DM to let me trade class level for caster level for the purpose of spells sticking around if we start off as 1-3 level characters ( also allows me to Prc out for other abilites. )  and i think this is a great class for being in a party of full casters.  just need to max out 2 skills and you can cast every spell in the game like a tweaked out archivist without the smell of cheese