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PostPosted: Sun Aug 03, 2014 8:54 pm 
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Pk Bait

Joined: Wed Sep 24, 2008 2:53 pm
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I'd like to preface this discussion by saying, I have no experience with module scripting and I am fully aware that my "ideas" may be outlandish or impossible (due to scripting limitations), so ridicule away if you must.

Assassin is one of my absolute favorite classes. I have a bit of a bias because it was my first prestige class I picked for the SP campaign when I got the NWN expansions. As it stands, the assassin is a one trick pony, and a bad trick at that. You may say it gets Lolth poison so it's more than one, but I say nay. If you must execute the paralysis or death in the same attack, then it's the same trick. The reason for this is obvious, no HiPs. The lack of access to any kind of HiPs (no rangers in SL) makes the assassin utterly useless as a standard sneak. Sure it gets the same 1d6 sneak attack progression as a rogue, so why not just flank when paralysis/poison fails?..well, rogue/SDs get the same plus catching the opponent flat-footed on every round, if HiPs spamming. Easy decision to go rogue/SD over assassin.

It is MY OPINION that selecting a faction-restricted prestige class should yield certain benefits that are more than just a gimmick. I don't even play in MASL, but I feel I would have a very fun time defending or raiding against a properly built assassin.

If possible, please add some version of limited HiPs at the epic-assassin levels. Rangers get outdoor HiPs at epic ranger (level 21), so maybe assassins can get indoor, underground, and/or night-time HiPs at assassin level 11 or later. If this HiPs makes the use of Lolth poison too OP, then remove the poison or reduce its DC.

I know the paralysis mechanic is hard-coded, but if you could add a short-duration paralysis effect (not curable with FoM), that runs in parallel to the death attack with the same DC, that would be cool too. I know, if the hard-coded paralysis check doesn't return a value you can use, then you'd have to build the new paralysis effect from scratch (checking for target's combat status) which can be a real pain in the [censored]. In any case, a failed attempt at paralysis or death should result in the assassin either retreating or continuing the fight using standard sneak tactics...it shouldn't automatically default to retreating. Nobody wants to build a toon that has to turn-tail when the one gimmick fails.

That is all.


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PostPosted: Mon Aug 04, 2014 12:09 am 
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PKer
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Assassin is indeed one of the most fun classes to play... even the way it is right now. It's very challenging, there are a lot of mechanics that you need to learn to be successful, and tons of practice needed (that you usually get as you level your sin to 40 solo). In defense of SL, having a couple veteran players on sins can utterly destroy a larger party. Heck, even a single sin alone can often wipe a party of 5 if they have no detection.

Sin has been given a few extra boons along the way:
sin class lvl/2 bonus to hide ms (so the 28-30 sin get +14 or 15)
1.5x duration true strike (i think 9 seconds of +20 ab... this is rarely used by anyone)

As far as changing paralysis, death attack dc, or removing death attack... that's just crazy talk. Death DC ranges from 45-48 base with the +1/2/3 mod based on terrain/location. Many toons can easily make that 48-51 dc save vs the vial, so it's not over the top right now. Removing the vial completely shouldn't even be considered. The paralysis DC ranges from about 51-55 and often requires prepping your target with a mord scroll. It's a mean DC, but requires good play in order to achieve consistent results.

With a skilled player at the helm, you can keep yourself out of sight and/or keep your target(s) disabled and dish out much more damage than an SD ever could with their 2 or 3 attacks in the first attack phase, then re-hips'ing. Most SD's are shorties while most sins are drow with racial darkness. That darkness can make a huge difference when dealing out massive damage vs the high fort toons you can't disable (it becomes a frog UV vs dispel game usually).

On the negative side... the saves are crap, the HP are crap, ab/ac often suffer, and to truly max that hide/ms/spot you have to give up some of the precious sin DC. There are only a couple/few truly viable high DC sin builds. The worst part of sin is that it's not a very effective dip class, like RDD or CoT or PM. Druid and DWD suffer from the same, but to a lesser extent. Sin is THE worst factional PRC for dipping.

Would having rangers be freaking awesome? Yes. Yes it would. But it also has to be conceded that rangers in SL, with sin and other classes, would really shake up the somewhat even factional playing field we currently have. Rangers in SL is the same joke as rogues in NC, there are just a few builds that would be over the top. Just throwing it out there, but a 21 ranger/ 19 sin for hips will have horrible sin DCs. It's not really a sin anymore, just an enhanced ranger with innate cats and int spells, perma UV, +9 hide/ms, and some nice sneak damage. Rogue may actually be a better choice because you can get cripple and edodge at the cost of losing the hide/ms bonus. Ranger clc is also a comparable build if you do trick domain for the hide/ms and gain a ton of cleric AB and some base damage at the cost of the sneak attack damage. The point is that a hips/sin using ranger isn't really the hips'ing death DC machine that is usually imagined. If anything, dipping ranger for the dual wield and AB is better than dipping monk for the dual or single kama attack progression and a couple extra ac and minimal speed boost.

My suggestion is to make a sin and lvl it to 40. Spend 33+ or 35+ solo in gobos and on the stair/heart. Maybe in DE even (although darkness isn't effective there). Make sure you take a longbow and some mord scrolls with you. Learn how to hips in darkness vs npcs with UV ;) Use a +4 int for DC on a 6 fight/6 monk/28 sin and you will have an awesome time in PvP with it. Just don't expect to run into a cradle defended by 5 players and wipe the room. But when 5 come to your cradle and you can respawn... they will be lucky to get a relic out. Tons of fun and lots of strategic thinking during battle-time.

Oh and during the relic events, when you hear about SL disregarding relics and just causing mayhem... there's usually at least 1 sin out there lurking around racking up a ton of kills.

A few of us from SL have been talking with the DMs/devs for years, trying to work out something viable, like you are seeking. It's really tough to work out. Lokey has a soft spot for SL's sins and adding the sin lvl/2 stealth buff was a huge win for the class. Yes, more could still be done to improve it, but balancing that line of factional equality makes it really tough. Please keep offering suggestions, because we have been trying to figure out how to do it for a long time.

(One of my earliest single player builds was 1 sd with sin. Game over.)

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 04, 2014 4:32 pm 
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The offer on the table is Sin = SD with sneak attack damage only and a few spell selections that work as spell for a CL of your sin level. Specifically 5 or 6 sin = access to epic dodge and some other highlights.

Didn't get much feedback besides I don't want to rebuild iirc.

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PostPosted: Mon Aug 04, 2014 6:31 pm 
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PKer
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Last time that mining and I talked about it, he offered a trade of barbarians for rangers. But we have a lot of barbarians 8(

That was back when mage staves had 5x crit on them ;)

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 06, 2014 10:39 pm 
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PKer

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I always wanted assassin to get some things at early levels that have nothing to do with death attacks and sneaking to make them viable multiclass options for many different types of builds. All the changes in the past have just reinforced the idea that you take 28-30 assassin levels and max out anything that relates to death attack. It is really boring from a building perspective.

A few ideas I've tossed around are:
- getting one of the two WM crit feats for free, making them a viable dip class for various melee builds.
- spell failure reduction or some auto-still feats for free, or maybe some boosts to arcane buffs like tensor's to make assassins a viable class for building spell-sword like characters. The spell sword build type is something rarely done, and extremely hard to do well at the moment in any faction.
- more interesting spells that would be worth building many different concepts around (this is really open ended of course)

I really don't like the idea of doing anything with HiPS. Assassin corner shaking is a really interesting and unique play style that promotes skill and strategy. HiPS just turns everything into a lame game of rock paper scissors.

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PostPosted: Thu Aug 07, 2014 12:37 am 
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PKer

Joined: Sat Oct 28, 2006 6:14 am
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- add int bonus to AB and/or damage

- add sneak damage on a critical hit

- called shot or crippling strike as a free feat

- something to make the assassin more effective the longer they are in combat with an opponent; a couple of the descriptions of assassins in pnp rule sets mention the assassin has to study his victim to be effective

- shadow daze, or dazzle, or distract -something that's not full hips, or is limited use, but is a little more convenient than corner sneaking

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PostPosted: Thu Aug 07, 2014 9:29 am 
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Pk Bait

Joined: Wed Sep 24, 2008 2:53 pm
Posts: 55
Hmm, I agree with the points that Bargeld and Lokey make. My predisposition to marry the sneak classes to HiPs is invalid. The other suggestions in subsequent replies are moderate enough to warrant consideration.

However, I heard there was some talk a while back of nerfing the HiPs spamming mechanic to counter the clearing of the action queue for people that can spot HiPsers. Maybe limited HiPs can be conferred to the assassin should such a nerf be implemented. When I suggested indoor HiPs in my first post it was with RP in mind and also to help the assassin remain throughout the fight before fleeing to prepare for the next paralysis/vial attack. I am not largely invested in this idea anymore, just a lingering thought.

When I suggested a paralysis "additional effect", I meant leave the vanilla paralysis untouched, but add a secondary paralysis effect. Both effects (vanilla + secondary) would then trigger on a successful hit. The secondary paralysis could be something like (assassin level / 15) rounds duration, of the same DC as the regular paralysis, and not stripped via FoM (I think bloody roar cannot be cured by FoM, so something like that). If too OP, then the secondary effect can be another mind-affecting type, like stun or daze, so that the victim remains flat-footed until they receive clarity. Requiring that the victim receive a cleansing effect after the fact, rather than before (FoM buff pre-negates paralysis), will force a support toon to spend a round (or half) to cast the cleanser. But it looks like a rebuild is off the table.

The assassin disabler is a superb and fun ability. But it loses attractiveness when much of the SL opposition has access to FoM. That's why I was thinking that even 1 round of guaranteed disable (barring a fort check) could give incentive to the assassin to stay in combat and maximize their damage output.

In the end, I was hoping we could steer the assassin more towards fight than flight.


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 07, 2014 1:22 pm 
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PKer
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onHit Fear would be awesome. Implemented similar to monks + stun fist... a targetable ability with # uses and DC based on sin levels. Maybe DC based on int or chr mod vs Will save. Would have to check the viability of maxing out chr because it would require a 3 ability split. Might be a good give and take, where a chr based fear sin wouldn't have the high paralyze DC and kill shot, but might not be OP if it was based on int and had decent DC for both. PDK and druid fear can hit 60 DC i think, and those are auras with no usage limitations and a ridiculous duration.

Would be really cool to be able to use a fear attack with a 3+ round disable, providing time to mord the target to strip fom, then hide, then try for a paralyze attack and have the target eligible.

Ideally, the fear attack would not chain like stun fist does.

"The presence of a Shadow Legion Assassin in battle can strike uncontrollable fear into the hearts of weak willed enemies."

Make it so, and I will come and build the first one :twisted:

_________________
Death Dealers ::DD::
Laufer - Gemetzel - Force - Little Fist - Egil - Torture - Hatshepsu - Nemesis - Hierophant - Supernaut - Flesh Hound - Insurrection - Antithesis - Dead of Winter - Volcanus 2000


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 07, 2014 2:56 pm 
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PKer

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I don't think giving yet another ability that is only good if you max out your assassin levels and build a cookie cutter assassin is going to solve much. They might get better, but they will still be one-build wonders that suck in pvm.

Also, dragon and pdk fear can't get nearly that high. Both max out at 53 with 20 base was/cha, 10 wish/cha feats, and a +4 book. Realistically they hover around 46-49.

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Raijin {FoN} - Arcadia {FoN} - Geb {FoN}


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PostPosted: Thu Aug 07, 2014 3:17 pm 
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Pk Bait

Joined: Wed Sep 24, 2008 2:53 pm
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Rufio is right about the DC. I have a cha-based PDK that has 50 DC fear aura (with a +4 book), and I wouldn't even attempt to step into the 51+ realm due to the sacrifices you'd need to make. You'd be a fearing, final standing PDK that can't do anything else. However, it is a no-limit use of sorts in that it hits multiple targets until it expires...the dragon one is permanent, though. I think you can't be feared again for a certain number of rounds, so it does have certain elements of balancing.

In its current setup, the assassin abilities are very useless against end-game mobs due to anti-exploit-bio-TS implementation, so I didn't even bother to ask for more PvM viability. I agree that it would still be a one-build wonder, which can be fixed with some early bonuses for dip classing, and hopefully bonuses that makes some RP sense for an assassin to have. There is some parallel to the barbarian class in that it's very hard (at least for me) to build anything other than pure barbarian. However, within the realm of pure barbarians there are different routes you can take, so there is still some variety to barbarians.

Many of the suggestions seem to be to add a free feat, like a WM crit, or crip strike. They are all good ideas, but I think Lokey might respond with "so you want Sin = <insert class> with sneak attack and access to rogue skills". The problem with assassin dip right now is that it is almost identical to rogue dip, but rogue is vastly superior in that it also gets evasion AND its not a prestige class, so it reserves the option to multi-class with available prestige classes. The addition of dip feats should make the assassin smell different from other dip classes. On that line of thought, I would like to see Improved Critical: Dagger at assassin level 5. The pros are it is a feat saver if you choose to focus on it, it is a grossly underused weapon type (I know many of you have Lolth daggers collecting dust somewhere), it is a typical RP assassination weapon, and existing sin builds won't feel obligated to delevel to claim the feat. A possible drawback is that new sin builds may feel that they're being pushed toward a weapon type. So maybe it can get Improved Critical in a few finessable weapons...or maybe that's too OP...argh! Balancing sucks.


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PostPosted: Sun Sep 07, 2014 2:36 am 
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Pk Bait
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Assassin is the most loved class ever... while others got nerfed, assassin got a new bonus every year (or more).

cats grace token, int token, c/c token , hide/ms bonus token (15 hide/ms on mine, long duration), DISPELL DC BONUS, yes 30 assassin is dc 26 to dispel, not 11 like other prc. What am I forgetting?

Also: spell changed to instant action, invisibility and improved invis (they provide like 2 hips + free sneaks vs a fighter without ts).

The ghostly visage spell changed to etherealness, no one can spot that, great to escape even a rumble.

Free and permanent ultravision!

And on top of all that: the instant kill poison, and another secret thing I wont tell (haven't seen anyone but Bril use it since Bril made the first Assassin improvements), you gotta find out yourself.

P.S.: My assassin has 45 fortitude vs implode and has not used con book. With con book and a g1 helm it would be 47 vs implode.
I don't know why so many assassins are implodable.

Tell me Nagaguard, let's say you defeated the SL defenders (haven't seen you raid, so don't know if you confident with it) and dc 60 assassin is waiting you get the relic to strike with poison.

Remember:
1) you cant use a cot
2) when you tap you are 100% dispelled
3) outside cradle room door there is a dozen epic traps.
How do you get out alive and with the relic? What toon you gonna use?

Can we say its already an Excellent, if not OP defender? have a very high fort or die, period.

second game: you are defending RK. And you want to use DWD.

There are 3 raiders but they don't raid together; they wait 30 mins and switch raider.
One is an assassin, dc 56 / 115 hide / 118 spot.
The second is Cleric Palemaster 75 ac 62 ab 92 discipline.
The third is a SL Rogue/fighter/sd with 120 hide ad 29 rogue levels.
Are you able to defend with the dwd?

Play another variant of this game where they defend and you raid.. with your DWD.

Assassin players are improving lately, finally I see traps being used, just xianxin and mov for the moment. The assassin is getting better with experience but it was already good.

The proof is the fact that almost no one raids SL. I rarely see NC/TC people raid when the assassin players are on..

What if the sd, or the ac cleric monks you like so much get killed by that assassin poison, it would be a tragedy!

Let the AO/RK guys raid them , so we raid AO/RK without risking that insta-death *nods nods*

Like i said before, Game is pretty well balanced, stunfist is pretty easy to counter, sd is pretty easy to counter (with a stunfister :) ) Palemaster?.. ahem.. is possible to counter with a mage but the fight can be long.
Cot? rumble and gang it! Shifter? use a mage! Dwd and Rdd? dispell and make a fool of em, stun, crit, sneak at will.

The only thing devs have left to do if they have time and if they want to, is to make new planes, fix missing database items, make rdd less a dispell bait (uh uh uh ill never give up), give some spells to AO guards, and other bugfixes (the list is long but don't want to post it now).
Oh and the gith plane double sword... It's damage is worse than dwp sword and lich king axe. 350 average vs 450 average damage/round for the dwp one (tested with str 40 and 5 attacks/round). Pretty bad for a level 40 weapon..Make it level 30!

Cheers :)

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PostPosted: Sun Sep 07, 2014 1:32 pm 
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PKer
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1) you cant use a cot, or dwd sneak immunity, Pally/bg high saves, RDD para immunity, shifters crit immunity/highsaves, any halfassed spotter.listener
2) when you tap you are 100% dispelled,
3) outside cradle room door there is a dozen epic traps.(we barely have enough time to get to the cradle room nevermind lay traps)
How do you get out alive and with the relic? What toon you gonna use? (pretty much anything has a decent chance, once in a blue moon we get lucky and knock one out)

There are 3 raiders but they don't raid together; they wait 30 mins and switch raider.
One is an assassin, dc 56 / 115 hide / 118 spot.
The second is Cleric Palemaster 75 ac 62 ab 92 discipline.
The third is a SL Rogue/fighter/sd with 120 hide ad 29 rogue levels.
Are you able to defend with the dwd?
well Dwd does have spot and pretty much wont be killed by any of those builds quickly being sneak immune and the craziest dr/di ever

and another secret thing I wont tell (haven't seen anyone but Bril use it since Bril made the first Assassin improvements)
Truestike token roflmao. stupid thing about that is you have to come out of hiding to use it and have about 6seconds to close on you target . Not so useful in melee

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PostPosted: Mon Sep 08, 2014 12:06 am 
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It's great when something awful gets a daunting reputation. A lot of the classes in tc/nc are outright immune even if they have 10 saves besides being functionally immune with decent saves (if you can fail that one, lots of things are going to instantly kill you) :)

RK can field practically anything, but 3 on 1, why not DWD? Lots of other things will go splat much faster and if something actually could stop 3 decent builds alone...

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Tep wrote:
I login and there's a dwarf to kill. You can't ask for much more than that.

Alkapwn wrote:
NC has the most amazing melee build there is. Its a friggin unstopable juggernaut of pain.


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PostPosted: Fri Dec 05, 2014 8:10 pm 
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I'm in to assasin dude, spell changed to instant action, invisibility and improved invis (they provide like 2 hips + free sneaks vs a fighter without ts). multiclass options for many different types of builds. All the changes in the past have just reinforced the idea that you take 28-30 assassin levels and max out anything that relates to death attack. And that's pretty cool dude! 8) :)


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