[WotC] A reworked Kensai

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[WotC] A reworked Kensai

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This topic is being archived from the Oriental Adventures forum at Wizards of the Coast, prior to that forum being deleted. It was posted on Jul 12, 2009 23:10:16.
tdsaw111 wrote:Hey Folks! Me and one of my players are looking at the Kensai from CW. Seems to be kinda bleh. Also my players tend not to like the Asian themes overall, so here I am trying to rework the class. Basically shifting the focus a bit into more of a weapons master than a social warlord.

Pre-reqs:
Warrior's Creed: Each (Name to be decided later) must swear an oath to uphold a creed of honor. This must be designed and agreed upon by the DM and player. This should reflect the Lawful and honor bound nature of the class and those that aspire to it.
Alignment: Any lawful
Skills:Tumble, Concentration, Craft(weapons) all at 5 ranks.
Feats: Combat Expertise, Weapon Focus, Weapon Specialization

Full BAB, Saves Strong Fort/Will, Skills 4+int. Skill list the same except -diplomacy for tumble.

Special Abilities:

Level 1: Signature Weapon, as in CW.
Level 2: Power Surge, as in CW.
Level 3: Skill Focus (Craft: Weaponsmithing)
Level 4: Greater Weapon Focus
Level 5: Greater Weapon Spec., Withstand, as in CW.
Level 6: Skill Focus (Concentration)
Level 7: Improved Combat Expertise
Level 8: ----
Level 9: Skill Focus (Tumble)
Level 10: Weapon Supremacy

So what do you guys think? Is this okay? Underpowered/Overpowered? Suggestions/Critiques?

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Re: [WotC] A reworked Kensai

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tdsaw111 wrote:No one? Really? Please?

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Re: [WotC] A reworked Kensai

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jinntolser wrote:By making Tumble a prerequisite, you're making it hard for Fighters to get into the class. And since you require Weapon Specialization as a prerequisite, it seems to me that you intend for Fighters to take the class.

So unless you play with a houserule that makes Tumble a class skill for Fighters (which is entirely reasonable IMO), then Fighters either need to waste a feat to gain Tumble as a class skill, multiclass, or wait until level 8 before they can enter the class (7 levels of Fighter to get 5 cross-class ranks). Making them cross-class to get in is pretty harsh since Fighters already have so few skill points.

As for the class itself, it looks fine to me in terms of power, although getting feats as class features is a little bland. The only alternative suggestion I could think of is to borrow some class features from the Weapon Master class in Sword and Fist, like maybe the increased critical multiplier 1/day for every 2 class levels or the maximized weapon damage 1/day per class level.

Overall it looks good, other than the prerequisites being problematic for Fighters.

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Re: [WotC] A reworked Kensai

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tdsaw111 wrote:Well there is a ACF in I think it was Cityscape? But yeah, I see your point. Perhaps I will drop the tumble all together, though leave it as a class skill. Or maybe just drop it to 2 ranks, which would be a single skill point per level.

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Re: [WotC] A reworked Kensai

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jinntolser wrote:I'm not familiar with the ACF in Cityscape so I'll have to take your word on that. Personally I don't see why Fighters don't just get Tumble as a class skill.

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Re: [WotC] A reworked Kensai

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tdsaw111 wrote:Agreed. Perhaps I will change that as well. Seems like if anyone should have the skill to move around the battlefield uninhibited it should be the fighter. So, if I do change it to be a class skill for fighters, then I will leave the Tumble requirement, if not do you think that Tumble 2 ranks is fine?

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Re: [WotC] A reworked Kensai

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jinntolser wrote:Yeah, that works fine I think.

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Re: [WotC] A reworked Kensai

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tdsaw111 wrote:Ok. So any other suggestions? Anything you would add or change?

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Re: [WotC] A reworked Kensai

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kasmodian wrote:i have to agree that the fact kensai does not grant full BAB is really silly so i like that part. looks a-ok with me, though i'm not a fan of the weapon spec requirement since that forces you in to 4 levels of fighter, and kensai would be tasty with a lot of different classes.

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Re: [WotC] A reworked Kensai

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maracate wrote:do you mind if I ask what it means?

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Re: [WotC] A reworked Kensai

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tdsaw111 wrote:I'm sorry. What does what mean, Maracate? I assume you are referring to the word Kensai. Kensei in ancient Japan, a was an honorary title given to a warrior of legendary skill in swordsmanship. Took that from Dictionary.com looks like maybe WotC may have been misspelling it.

As for the Weapon Spec, I feel that the Signature Weapon ability already kinda forces you to chose a weapon, and that it made sense to enforce that through dedication to the weapon. Besides, you can qualify for the class after only 4 levels of fighter, meaning that you can take it at 5th, which leaves plenty of room for dipping later. And since the original already required Weapon Focus I felt Spec. made sense for a true master of a given weapon. Especially since I then grant them the rest of the tree as bonus feats.

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Re: [WotC] A reworked Kensai

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kasmodian wrote:i like the idea of opening the weapon spec tree through kensai since i agree that it is very much in the spirit of the class. if i did something like the PrC you posted i'd simply remove the prereq for weapon spec since the fact that it's fighter only makes it too restrictive. of course i'm of the opinion weapon spec should be open to other classes too but that's just me.

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Re: [WotC] A reworked Kensai

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tdsaw111 wrote:Ok. Maybe I could drop Weapon Spec and add it to first level?

I was kinda thinking I wanted something to get rid of the dead levels? Any suggestions? I just really hate dead levels.

Maybe something like Skill Focus for Craft Weapons? Skill Focus Concentration? Hmmm... I dont know... lol

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Re: [WotC] A reworked Kensai

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unundindur wrote:I guess it depends a bit on what people like, but I envision the Kensai more as a monk/fighter, with things like blindsense, deflect arrows (with weapons etc). As such I think the Shou Disciple is the most representative Kensai by RAW.

I also feel that by giving out weapon supremacy, although it is 100% in tune with the fluff is stepping too much on the toes of the fighter, as you take away the last of the few unique benefits of that class.

I think I would have Still Mind and Weapon Specialisation as prerequisites, add bonus speed, unarmoured AC, allow deflect arrows with chosen weapon and make the weapon abilities more unique. Signature weapon should probably get Ki channeling for free too.

Chances are I am not the majority, but this is how I see it.

Image

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Re: [WotC] A reworked Kensai

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teshen wrote:I would suggest rolling up and slowing the focus and specialization abilities to help avoid dead levels. I'll also second and expand on JinnTolser's suggestion to add some of the weapon abilities of the Sword and Fist weapon master prc.

Think of adding an ability and calling it martial skill or something, and giving out a list of abilities, only one of which can be chosen.

One could be the ability to deal maximum weapon damage without rolling class level/3 per encounter, or a few different special abilities based on the weapon type or the fighting style...

Lv|BAB|Fort|Ref|Will|Features 1|+1|+2|+0|+2|Signature Weapon 2|+2|+3|+0|+3|Power Surge, Signature Focus (+0/+1) 3|+3|+3|+1|+3|Martial Skill 4|+4|+4|+1|+4|Signature Focus (+1/+2) 5|+5|+4|+1|+4|Withstand 6|+6|+5|+2|+5|Martial Skill, Signature Focus (+1/+3) 7|+7|+5|+2|+5|Improved Combat Expertise 8|+8|+6|+2|+6|Signature Focus (+1/+4) 9|+9|+6|+3|+6|Martial Skill 10|+10|+7|+3|+7|Weapon Supremacy

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Re: [WotC] A reworked Kensai

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thecrazedcow wrote:
...Also my players tend not to like the Asian themes overall
I think that putting in things like unarmored ac and other monklike abilities would detract from someone who doesn't want to play Asian themed character. (Which frankly should have little to no place in a D&D game imo) Seriously whens the last time you could reasonably imagine (in a non anime world) a paladin and a ninja happily adventuring together in dungeons? *shrug*

I dig the class, overall seems pretty balanced, it gives a better bab and fort save than the base class. The skill focus's are a nifty thing to have and would provide good flavor to the class although not much mechanically.

I feel as though the requirements for weapon specialization is a good thing because there arent any good classes with that as a requirement for a fighter to move towards. To be honest playing a fighter 1 to 20 is rather boring, by the time you are able to get weapon supremacy (level 18?) its not really worth the benefits it gives compared to level 10 in some prc's. The weapon supremacy in this prc is merely icing on the cake I think.

If you feel as though something else should be added perhaps a daily ability at 3, 6, and 9. Something like a rerolled attack roll maybe, or a ac bonus to foes using melee weapons. Another option is to improve upon the other abilities withstand and power surge.

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Re: [WotC] A reworked Kensai

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unundindur wrote:
thecrazedcow wrote:I think that putting in things like unarmored ac and other monklike abilities would detract from someone who doesn't want to play Asian themed character. (Which frankly should have little to no place in a D&D game imo) Seriously whens the last time you could reasonably imagine (in a non anime world) a paladin and a ninja happily adventuring together in dungeons? *shrug*
Well, in that case using the name "Kensai" is kind of... weird ;)

Swordmaster or something would probably suit such a class better if you want to get rid of the asian stuff.

As for a paladin and ninja adventuring together, that seems just as likely as a paladin and a rogue adventuring together. Not much difference between rogues and ninjas if you ask me (except for the name, but using the name Kensai kind of defeats that line of thought).

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Re: [WotC] A reworked Kensai

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thecrazedcow wrote:I agree a change of the name of the class would be prudent, something like weapon master. Another bit of fluff might be to add a warriors code similar to the one put forward with the base prc.

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Re: [WotC] A reworked Kensai

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tdsaw111 wrote:Ok. So I a adding the Warrior's Code, basically the same as Kensai's Oath of Service. Also going to try out the Skill Focuses. And yeah, in the final rundown I believe I am going to change the name of the class to... well that will need looking into. Any suggestions are welcome. I like the Social meaning of the word Kensei, but not particularly the Asian flair.

So yeah, any further suggestions are more then welcome.

Also considering what to do for eighth level. I was thinking maybe having them be able to imbue their armor at 1/2 their effective level.

Also, anyone know who moved this and why? This is now in a setting specific section, where it should be in the classes section as it is referring to the PrC from the Complete Warrior book, not anything to do with Oriental Adventures? Anyone know how I get it moved back?

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