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snakeman830

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Tier system for templates
« on: January 29, 2010, 10:12:21 PM »
Classes and prestige classes have their tier systems.  This time, the ratings will be comparing the benefits and drawbacks of a template compared to its level adjustment.  This listing will be for templates with listed level adjustments ONLY.

So, what does it mean to be in each tier?  The definitions below are assuming you're playing to the template's strengths (i.e., no Feral Wizards)

Tier 1: These templates are ones that you would take almost without a second thought if they were allowed.  In fact, these templates are so good, there had better be a good reason why you didn't take them.  Most of the templates in this category can easily be considered broken.

Tier 2: These templates are strong choices. Their benefits are easily worth the class levels you give up for them, but they aren't going to hinder your character if you don't take them.

Tier 3: These templates are about even with the class levels you give up.  It doesn't make much difference in the power of your character either way.

Tier 4: Tier 4 templates aren’t worth their LA.    Templates of this level will likely hinder your character more than help, but they won’t make the character unplayable.

Tier 5: These are the templates that are never worth their cost.  If you took one of these templates, you had better have a darn good reason why you did (and yes, the DM forcing it on you counts).  Tier 5 templates will hinder your character and will most likely make it close to unplayable.

Dragonborn: Dragonborn deserves special mention.  Unlike other templates, what you gain and lose from it is highly dependent on your starting race.  For example, a Catfolk makes out extremely well with this template (Tier 2), but for a Human it’s a terrible choice (tier 4 or 5).

Templates that combine creatures: Likewise, there are some templates (Entomanthrope, Lycanthrope (MM1), Tauric (MM2, SS) and Symbiotic (SS)) that combine two creatures.   Listing them in a specific tier may be misleading.  The benefits from these templates varies greatly with what creatures are chosen.  For example, a werefleshraker is a much more potent template than a wereboar, much more potent that the ECL of 1 higher would suggest.  For this reason, these templates will not be listed.

Savage Progressions:  Some templates have Savage Progressions printed for them.  For those not familiar with these, Savage Progressions spread out the benefits of a race or template over multiple levels equalling the race's ECL.  My ratings for these are going to be based on buying off each level of level adjustment ASAP.  If the Progression specifically cannot be split up, then simply consider the normal template entry.

Book tags[spoiler]BoED  Book of Exalted Deeds
BoVD  Book of Vile Darkness
DragMz  Dragon Magazine (number follows)
DotU  Drow of the Underdark
LM  Libris Mortis
LoM  Lords of Madness
MM  Monster Manual (numbers follow)
PnH  Planar Handbook
Sand  Sandstorm
Storm  Stormwrack
SoX  Secrets of Xen'drik
SS  Savage Species
ToM  Tome of Magic
Und  Underdark
XPH  Expanded Psionics Handbook[/spoiler]
« Last Edit: February 03, 2010, 12:59:45 AM by snakeman830 »
I am constantly amazed by how many DM's ban Tomb of Battle.  The book doesn't even exist!

Quotes:[spoiler]
By yes, she means no.
That explains so much about my life.
hiicantcomeupwithacharacterthatisntaghostwhyisthatamijustretardedorsomething
Why would you even do this? It hurts my eyes and looks like you ate your keyboard before suffering an attack of explosive diarrhea.
[/spoiler]

If using Genesis to hide your phylactry, set it at -300 degrees farenheit.  See how do-gooders fare with a liquid atmosphere.

snakeman830

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Tier 1 templates
« Reply #1 on: January 29, 2010, 10:12:47 PM »
Artic +0 (DragMz 306)
Divine Minion +1 or +2 (Web Enhancement)
Feral +1 (SS)
Half Minotaur +1 (DragMz313)
Magic Blooded +0 (Drag Mz 297?)
Mineral Warrior +1 (Und)
Primordial Giant +0 (SoX)
Saint (without RP requirements) +2 (BoED)
Unseelie Fey +0 (DragMz Compendium)
White Dragonspawn +1 (location needed)

Savage Progressions
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« Last Edit: February 02, 2010, 08:59:32 PM by snakeman830 »
I am constantly amazed by how many DM's ban Tomb of Battle.  The book doesn't even exist!

Quotes:[spoiler]
By yes, she means no.
That explains so much about my life.
hiicantcomeupwithacharacterthatisntaghostwhyisthatamijustretardedorsomething
Why would you even do this? It hurts my eyes and looks like you ate your keyboard before suffering an attack of explosive diarrhea.
[/spoiler]

If using Genesis to hide your phylactry, set it at -300 degrees farenheit.  See how do-gooders fare with a liquid atmosphere.

snakeman830

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Tier 2 templates
« Reply #2 on: January 29, 2010, 10:13:02 PM »
Dark Creature +1 (ToM)
Draconic +1 (RotD, Drac)
Half Fey +2 (FF)
Lolth Touched +1 (DotU)
Necropolitan +0 (but see text)(LM)
Phrenic +2 (XPH)
Quasilycanthrope +1 (Web Enhancement)
Saint (with RP requirements) +2 (BoED)
Shadow Creature +2 (PnH, LoM)
Spellwarped +3 (MM3)
Voidmind (freed) +3 (MM3)
« Last Edit: February 02, 2010, 08:57:32 PM by snakeman830 »
I am constantly amazed by how many DM's ban Tomb of Battle.  The book doesn't even exist!

Quotes:[spoiler]
By yes, she means no.
That explains so much about my life.
hiicantcomeupwithacharacterthatisntaghostwhyisthatamijustretardedorsomething
Why would you even do this? It hurts my eyes and looks like you ate your keyboard before suffering an attack of explosive diarrhea.
[/spoiler]

If using Genesis to hide your phylactry, set it at -300 degrees farenheit.  See how do-gooders fare with a liquid atmosphere.

snakeman830

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Tier 3 templates
« Reply #3 on: January 29, 2010, 10:13:17 PM »
Half Air Elemental +3 (MotP, DragMz 326)
Half Dragon (with racial HD) +3 (MM)
Half-Vampire +2 (LM)

Savage Progressions
Ghost 5 Web Enhancement
« Last Edit: February 25, 2010, 02:50:13 PM by snakeman830 »
I am constantly amazed by how many DM's ban Tomb of Battle.  The book doesn't even exist!

Quotes:[spoiler]
By yes, she means no.
That explains so much about my life.
hiicantcomeupwithacharacterthatisntaghostwhyisthatamijustretardedorsomething
Why would you even do this? It hurts my eyes and looks like you ate your keyboard before suffering an attack of explosive diarrhea.
[/spoiler]

If using Genesis to hide your phylactry, set it at -300 degrees farenheit.  See how do-gooders fare with a liquid atmosphere.

snakeman830

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Tier 4 templates
« Reply #4 on: January 29, 2010, 10:13:32 PM »
Amphibious +0 (Storm)
Ghost +5 (MM1)
Half Celestial +4 (MM1)
Half-Dragon (without racial HD) +3 (MM1)
Half Fiend +4 (MM1)
Lich +4 (MM1)
Shade +4 (Races of Faerun)
« Last Edit: February 03, 2010, 12:55:23 AM by snakeman830 »
I am constantly amazed by how many DM's ban Tomb of Battle.  The book doesn't even exist!

Quotes:[spoiler]
By yes, she means no.
That explains so much about my life.
hiicantcomeupwithacharacterthatisntaghostwhyisthatamijustretardedorsomething
Why would you even do this? It hurts my eyes and looks like you ate your keyboard before suffering an attack of explosive diarrhea.
[/spoiler]

If using Genesis to hide your phylactry, set it at -300 degrees farenheit.  See how do-gooders fare with a liquid atmosphere.

snakeman830

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Tier 5 templates
« Reply #5 on: January 29, 2010, 10:13:43 PM »
Celestial +2 (MM1)
Fiendish +2 (MM1)
Vampire +8 (MM1)
Voidmind (enslaved) +3 (MM3)
« Last Edit: February 03, 2010, 12:56:14 AM by snakeman830 »
I am constantly amazed by how many DM's ban Tomb of Battle.  The book doesn't even exist!

Quotes:[spoiler]
By yes, she means no.
That explains so much about my life.
hiicantcomeupwithacharacterthatisntaghostwhyisthatamijustretardedorsomething
Why would you even do this? It hurts my eyes and looks like you ate your keyboard before suffering an attack of explosive diarrhea.
[/spoiler]

If using Genesis to hide your phylactry, set it at -300 degrees farenheit.  See how do-gooders fare with a liquid atmosphere.

snakeman830

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Re: Tier system for templates
« Reply #6 on: January 29, 2010, 10:14:20 PM »
Okay, on to discussion.  I have very few templates put up, but I will add more as I go.
« Last Edit: January 29, 2010, 10:15:52 PM by snakeman830 »
I am constantly amazed by how many DM's ban Tomb of Battle.  The book doesn't even exist!

Quotes:[spoiler]
By yes, she means no.
That explains so much about my life.
hiicantcomeupwithacharacterthatisntaghostwhyisthatamijustretardedorsomething
Why would you even do this? It hurts my eyes and looks like you ate your keyboard before suffering an attack of explosive diarrhea.
[/spoiler]

If using Genesis to hide your phylactry, set it at -300 degrees farenheit.  See how do-gooders fare with a liquid atmosphere.

bearsarebrown

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Re: Tier system for templates
« Reply #7 on: January 29, 2010, 10:40:36 PM »
Unseelie Fey is from Dragon Magazine Compendium. Probably worth an edit.
I argue that Necropolitan(the immunities are staggering) is a tier 2 along with Mineral Warrior(gives up flight forever, crippling at high levels).

Saint(BoED) is probably a Tier 2. The insane good limitations + the exalted feat minimum stop it from being tier 1. (+2LA)
Half-Minotuar(Dr313) is a Tier 1. +12 Str, +6 Con, Track, +2 wis, Gore attack, +2 natural armor, and LARGE SIZE for a +1 LA is  :shock
Lolth-Touched(DotU) is a Tier 1/2. +6Str/+6Con for a +1 LA is strong and simple.
Half-Fey(FF) is a tier 2. Wings, DR, tons of SLAs, Charm Person at will, great mental ability bonuses, effective Mind Blank for a +2LA is great.
Lycanthrope is a Tier 1-5. Depending on what animal you take.  :P
Artic and Magic Blooded from Dragon 297(?) are great. +0 LA for either +2Con/-2Cha or +2Cha/-2xxx is really good for true Min/Max.
Dry Lich is a lot stronge then a normal Lich. Probably a tier 2 or 3. +4 LA, Sandstorm.


I think it'd be worth it to list the LA on each template.

And I stand by a +2/+1/+0/-1/-2 would be a better system. You use the base classes are tiers and allow the templates to adjust them. Would work just like PrC tiers.

TheEndIsNear

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Re: Tier system for templates
« Reply #8 on: January 29, 2010, 10:58:25 PM »
Lolth touched is from MM4 Tier1.  +6 str and con imunity to fear and bonuses to hide and move silently? Oh but you have to be chaotic evil... For +1 LA? WORTH IT in any non alignment restricted campaign.

snakeman830

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Re: Tier system for templates
« Reply #9 on: January 29, 2010, 11:14:04 PM »
Unseelie Fey is from Dragon Magazine Compendium. Probably worth an edit.
I argue that Necropolitan(the immunities are staggering) is a tier 2 along with Mineral Warrior(gives up flight forever, crippling at high levels).
Mineral Warrior doesn't prevent you from gaining flight after its application, you just lose any flight speed you already have.
Quote
Saint(BoED) is probably a Tier 2. The insane good limitations + the exalted feat minimum stop it from being tier 1. (+2LA)
Half-Minotuar(Dr313) is a Tier 1. +12 Str, +6 Con, Track, +2 wis, Gore attack, +2 natural armor, and LARGE SIZE for a +1 LA is  :shock
Lolth-Touched(DotU) is a Tier 1/2. +6Str/+6Con for a +1 LA is strong and simple.
Half-Fey(FF) is a tier 2. Wings, DR, tons of SLAs, Charm Person at will, great mental ability bonuses, effective Mind Blank for a +2LA is great.
Lycanthrope is a Tier 1-5. Depending on what animal you take.  :P
Artic and Magic Blooded from Dragon 297(?) are great. +0 LA for either +2Con/-2Cha or +2Cha/-2xxx is really good for true Min/Max.
Dry Lich is a lot stronge then a normal Lich. Probably a tier 2 or 3. +4 LA, Sandstorm.


I think it'd be worth it to list the LA on each template.
I agree with all of these, although Lycanthrope caps out at tier 2 IMO.  A similar note will be made for Tauric.  I'll be adding them in.

Quote
And I stand by a +2/+1/+0/-1/-2 would be a better system. You use the base classes are tiers and allow the templates to adjust them. Would work just like PrC tiers.
To this I disagree.  PrC's have a "logical entry" that their ratings are based off of.  Templates don't.
« Last Edit: January 29, 2010, 11:24:54 PM by snakeman830 »
I am constantly amazed by how many DM's ban Tomb of Battle.  The book doesn't even exist!

Quotes:[spoiler]
By yes, she means no.
That explains so much about my life.
hiicantcomeupwithacharacterthatisntaghostwhyisthatamijustretardedorsomething
Why would you even do this? It hurts my eyes and looks like you ate your keyboard before suffering an attack of explosive diarrhea.
[/spoiler]

If using Genesis to hide your phylactry, set it at -300 degrees farenheit.  See how do-gooders fare with a liquid atmosphere.

NiteCyper

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Re: Tier system for templates
« Reply #10 on: January 29, 2010, 11:30:46 PM »
Vecna-blooded (stealth), Incarnate Construct, Mulhorandi Divine Minion,

addendum: 29-01-10, 18:32:00, -8 GMT, Symbiotic Creature.

addendum 2: 29-01-10, 13:32, -8 GMT, Chameleon, Shadow, Shadow-walker

addendum 3: 29-01-10, 18:34, -8 GMT, White Dragonspawn.
« Last Edit: January 29, 2010, 11:34:02 PM by NiteCyper »
Caveat: I edit my posts, ever and anon after.

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Re: Tier system for templates
« Reply #11 on: January 29, 2010, 11:32:38 PM »
There's also the issue of whether or not you take LA when you get Lich from Dread Necromancer or Dry Lich from Walker in the Waste.

snakeman830

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Re: Tier system for templates
« Reply #12 on: January 29, 2010, 11:40:01 PM »
There's also the issue of whether or not you take LA when you get Lich from Dread Necromancer or Dry Lich from Walker in the Waste.
I think the rule of template-applying classes and PrC's is that you don't gain the LA.  It wouldn't make sense for someone to suddenly have their ECL jump by 4 when they took the last level of Dragon Disciple, for example.  Increase by 1, yes, but not 4.
I am constantly amazed by how many DM's ban Tomb of Battle.  The book doesn't even exist!

Quotes:[spoiler]
By yes, she means no.
That explains so much about my life.
hiicantcomeupwithacharacterthatisntaghostwhyisthatamijustretardedorsomething
Why would you even do this? It hurts my eyes and looks like you ate your keyboard before suffering an attack of explosive diarrhea.
[/spoiler]

If using Genesis to hide your phylactry, set it at -300 degrees farenheit.  See how do-gooders fare with a liquid atmosphere.

Nust

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Re: Tier system for templates
« Reply #13 on: January 29, 2010, 11:41:13 PM »
There's also the issue of whether or not you take LA when you get Lich from Dread Necromancer or Dry Lich from Walker in the Waste.

I was of the understanding that you don't, and I thought that was the general consensus on these boards, maybe I was wrong.

kevin_video

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Re: Tier system for templates
« Reply #14 on: January 30, 2010, 12:03:22 AM »
There's also the issue of whether or not you take LA when you get Lich from Dread Necromancer or Dry Lich from Walker in the Waste.

I was of the understanding that you don't, and I thought that was the general consensus on these boards, maybe I was wrong.
Yeah I have no idea about that either. Wouldn't mind knowing though.

I see Vecna blooded, but isn't it just a straight up +1 for "God-blooded"? These seem to fit for Kord, Vecna, Gruumsh, and the like. I'd say it's a decent +1 if you are a divine user. I'd say tier +2.

There's other templates in MMV.

I don't agree with the Feral template. I'd say make that a tier 2. It's only a tier 1 if you have racial hit die. If you have only class hit die, it's not worth it as much.

Also missing are the half elementals. They're not bad, but if you're a spell caster it's not so great. And vampires are bad, but they're not as bad as death knights. I can no believe they're so high up there. Definitely on the same level as a vamp, if not a half-friend.

Oh, and add in the alternate vampire templates. Like the lunar moon vamp. For a +0 add-on, the vampire gains NOTHING, but they take damage from moon as if they were in the sun. Psychic vamps are much more worth it.
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TheEndIsNear

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Re: Tier system for templates
« Reply #15 on: January 30, 2010, 12:12:45 AM »
Also +1 template divine minion is tier one, give wildshape as a level 11 druid.

wotmaniac

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Re: Tier 4 templates
« Reply #16 on: January 30, 2010, 12:21:29 AM »
Aquatic +0 (Storm)
Half Celestial +4 (MM1)
Half-Dragon +3 (MM1)
Half Fiend +4 (MM1)
Lich +4 (MM1)
don't you mean "amphibious" (instead of "aquatic")?
even with a -2 dex, I don't see how a "+0" template can be below a tier 3 -- in context, you're probably not taking it unless you're in an aquatic campaign (which is what the whole book is about -- otherwise, why are you using the book).
That's just on observation on context -- take it FWIW  :shrug


Also +1 template divine minion is tier one, give wildshape as a level 11 druid.
I think that divine minion is off the chart (depending on the associated deity, of course)
« Last Edit: January 30, 2010, 12:23:42 AM by wotmaniac »

[spoiler]
If you stop ignoring 289 pages telling what the intent is to stretch "more power" in your own god complexion of your interpretation trumps all to cover ability adjustments from aging then I will ignore a quarter page of rules that exist within a sidebar.
I think in this case the grammar is less important than whether the Str and Dex bonus provided to your created undead scales.

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The_Mad_Linguist

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Re: Tier system for templates
« Reply #17 on: January 30, 2010, 12:30:53 AM »
Arctic and Magic-blooded are from dragon 306

Other templates from there
Aquatic (LA+0) - oh no!  You breathe water now!
Deep dweller (LA+1) - not really worth it for +2 int, -2 str.
Desert(LA+0): A SLA, bonuses to two skills, and a slight benefit to resisting fire/weakness to resisting cold

Wild(LA+0): +5 feet to base speed (note: not base land speed, and not an enhancement bonus), remove all previous racial skill thingies in exchange for +1 skill point/level and some wilderness-based skill bonuses and social skill penalties.  Lose racial SLAs, +2 str, -2 int, -2 cha. 
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kevin_video

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Re: Tier system for templates
« Reply #18 on: January 30, 2010, 12:32:17 AM »
Should add Troll Blooded +1 LA to the list as well.
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snakeman830

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Re: Tier system for templates
« Reply #19 on: January 30, 2010, 12:33:01 AM »
Divine Minion added, Feral and Half Dragon have been split depending on presence of racial HD.

Tomorrow I'll go through Crystalkeep's template list and add those.

Isn't Troll Blooded a feat?
I am constantly amazed by how many DM's ban Tomb of Battle.  The book doesn't even exist!

Quotes:[spoiler]
By yes, she means no.
That explains so much about my life.
hiicantcomeupwithacharacterthatisntaghostwhyisthatamijustretardedorsomething
Why would you even do this? It hurts my eyes and looks like you ate your keyboard before suffering an attack of explosive diarrhea.
[/spoiler]

If using Genesis to hide your phylactry, set it at -300 degrees farenheit.  See how do-gooders fare with a liquid atmosphere.