Talk:Courier (3.5e Prestige Class)

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I don't like all the red links. I know that they may get better but please wait until you have made all the redirects to implement them. Also, the special abilities should use anchors and not titles. Sorry if I sound rude. --Green Dragon 23:08, 13 February 2007 (MST)

You might want to change the formatting in the "New Prestige Class" template, e.g. Prerequisites. --Cúthalion 11:20, 14 February 2007 (MST)
I know, I know... --Green Dragon 16:47, 15 February 2007 (MST)

Class revisions[edit]

  1. Ability scores shouldn't be prereqs.
  2. "Any one..." for skills is not a stringent requirement and should be avoided-- the idea of a prestige class is that it is specifically focused, and specific entry requirements help ensure that happens.
  3. The class is slightly heavy on saving throws and abilities for a class that also gets a small amount of spell each day... just something to keep in mind when the class is still in the early stages of coming together.

--EldritchNumen 01:33, 14 February 2007 (MST)

Ability scores shouldn't be prereqs. --EldritchNumen 01:33, 14 February 2007 (MST)

I can abide by this, but I'm not sure I see the rationale. Prestige classes can have feats for prereqs, which in turn can have attributes for prereqs. Doesn't it make just as much sense to say, for instance, that a character without a certain minimal intrinsic agility will never become a circus acrobat, a character without a minimal intrinsic strength will never become a professional weightlifter, or a character without a minimal intrinsic charisma will never become a politician? (Okay, I guess that last one's debatable.) --Cúthalion 10:02, 14 February 2007 (MST)
I replaced Dex 13 with Dodge, which has the same net effect, although it also burns another feat. I decided Cha 9 is mostly superfluous given the Cha requirement for spells (presumably the same reason Sorcerer doesn't have a Cha requirement). --Cúthalion 10:09, 14 February 2007 (MST)

"Any one..." for skills is not a stringent requirement and should be avoided-- the idea of a prestige class is that it is specifically focused, and specific entry requirements help ensure that happens. --EldritchNumen 01:33, 14 February 2007 (MST)

Again, I can abide by this, but I'm not sure I understand why. Isn't it pretty stringent & focused to say, "You have to be competent at each of this set of skills and an expert at one of them"? --Cúthalion 10:02, 14 February 2007 (MST)
Well, I changed it so that all skill requirements are absolutely specified, but I'm not convinced this is an improvement. --Cúthalion 15:37, 14 February 2007 (MST)

The class is slightly heavy on saving throws and abilities for a class that also gets a small amount of spell each day... just something to keep in mind when the class is still in the early stages of coming together. --EldritchNumen 01:33, 14 February 2007 (MST)

My sense of what is balanced for a prestige class is weak at best, just sort of a gut feeling from looking at other descriptions. Has anyone ever done a formal analysis? Anyway, thanks, I'll tone it down. --Cúthalion 10:02, 14 February 2007 (MST)
I eliminated one good saving throw (Fort) and one special ability. My sense is that this is now somewhat weaker than the Assassin. The courier has one more good ST and better skills, but this doesn't make up for the almost complete lack of offensive capability. I'm inclined to put the good Fort save back. What do folks think? --15:37, 14 February 2007 (MST)
Sorry it's taken me a while to get back. I wrote a rather lengthy reply yesterday but accidentally closed the tab without saving, so there goes that... in any case, here are some thoughts...
  1. This isn't weaker than the assassin. If anything, it is better at what it is meant to do. Don't confuse what that means; with sneak attack and a small smattering of spells, the assassin is better at offensive combat, which makes sense (it is meant for some kind of combat). This class is good at movement and mobility, and it is incredible at it. Uncanny Dodge, Imp. Unc Dod., Evasion, Imp. Evasion, unbreakable stride, freedom of movement, spells, and a 3 step movement increase make this class have about as many major abilities as the assassin (uncanny dodge/imp. uncanny dod., death attack, sneak attack several times, hide in plain sight, a few spells). This class shouldn't be better offensively than the assassin, but it should be better at getting around, and it is.
  2. The rationale for no ability prereqs is that someone with a low score can still take the class, they will just be bad at it. It would be fine for a character with low dexterity to be an acrobat; they would simply be a bad acrobat, just a most rogues are bad without high dexterity scores and wizards are bad without high intelligence scores. In many cases this can be overcome through training (e.g. through ability increases over levels or through taking feats such as Skill Focus. One the other hand, feats and abilities make sense as prerequisites: if a ranger doesn't have dragons as a favored enemy, he shouldn't be a dragon hunter, just as a courier should have run and endurance. Yes, I understand that some feats (e.g. dodge, combat expertise) have prereqs, but that is simply incidental, and shouldn't be used as a way of making a character have some score (e.g. I want my Shaolin Monk Prestige Class to have Dex 13+, and so only for that reason will I add dodge as a prereq, even though otherwise I wouldn't).
  3. Regarding skills, it is simply intrinsically contradictory to say that choosing 1 from a set of 4 is as specific as choosing 1 from a set of 1. I understand how it is easier to let the character choose, but a prestige class should be focused beyond this point. The DMG says:
Don't require levels in a specific class, minimum ability scores, or minimum hit points to qualify for a prestige class. Make your prestige class as specific as possible... (pg. 197).
  1. Some formal analyses have been done. This is primarily done by assigning a value to each ability measured in "feat equivalency." If, for example, every iteration of sneak attack is worth 2 feats, but unbreakable stride is only worth 1, then we can see the difference in value between the abilities. By summing all the "feat equivalency" scores for the abilities for a class, we can see the average worth of the class numerically (although, since DnD is such a complex game, this is not always the best rating). This is one way that classes can be evaluated, but cannot be and--fortunately-- is not the only way. In any sort of rating with a subject so complex, there is some measure of art and experience that are useful.
  2. Overall, the class is looking very nice. It has a great flavor and I very much look forward to seeing the finished product. You've added great material to the site, and I look forward to seeing more! Thanks for all your contributions--
--EldritchNumen 17:23, 15 February 2007 (MST)
Thanks for putting in so much time for my education. :)
Did you see the File:Class Comparison.ods that I posted? It's very close in principle to what you describe for prestige classes. Can you point me to any of that work? --Cúthalion 20:13, 15 February 2007 (MST)

Rating - 9/10[edit]

Very well done. I'm a little worried about three spells per day but four spells known, max, but that may be just me... probably doesn't affect balance much. But there are a few spells on the list that don't really seem to match the class' theme - I'm looking at Obscure Object (I could see it at a higher level, but level 2 seems a bit high... If only there were a lvl 1.5...), color spray, fog cloud, hypnotic pattern, illusory script, see invisibility, arcane sight (none of these are really things someone running from one place to another would need, though I can see Color Spray as a bit of self-defense), hold person, dispel magic, rainbow pattern, stinking cloud, and web (these are all pretty powerful spells - the Courier seems to shift from defense and running to offense at the later spell levels). I would suggest, at the very least, increase Dispel Magic to level 4, and possibly eliminate some of the other offensive spells. Spells with a different focus from the class should also be considered for deletion. Armond 12:42, 6 March 2007 (MST)

Yeah, I may have gone overboard on the spell list. I figured having such a wide selection wouldn't be that big an advantage given that he can only learn 4 per level. (The spell progression is modeled on the assassin, btw.) Obscure object seemed de rigueur for a courier tasked to transport some important item, such as an artifact. You'll note that the "offensive" spells are all non-damaging, designed to distract or temporarily disable a pursuer while you slip away. They're also all one level higher than normal. (e.g. Web is a 2nd level wizard spell, but a 3rd level courier spell.) Anyway, I'll take another look. --Cúthalion 15:33, 6 March 2007 (MST)
The only other thing I see as problematic is the referral fee... That's more money than your standard fifth-level character is supposed to have, isn't it? Maybe cut it down to 2,000 gold (enough for a fifth level player to pay if he stretches, I believe, and much easier for higher-level characters), or make it an inverse function of character level. Armond 12:42, 6 March 2007 (MST)
I have no documentation for this, and experience in only one recent campaign, which I'm guessing is rather gold- (and magic-) rich. I'll go ahead and lower it. Thanks for the suggestion. --Cúthalion 15:33, 6 March 2007 (MST)
Now that you mention it, Obscure Object does sound pretty neat in this class. For the same reason, Illusionary Script could actually be handy (if you need to hand off instructions of what to do because you think you're going to die, for example). The spells known/per day still kind of bothers me, but it's probably balanced now... I'm debating upping my rating to ten. Let me think on it. Armond 11:53, 7 March 2007 (MST)
9 is amazing, 10 is godlike (UT04 reference :)). 10 may be too much as 8 is on the same level as the SRD. If this does not strike out in a new direction put it to an 8 as an 8 is a very very good rating on D&D Wiki. If this is just balanced an 8 is the correct rating, not 9 and certainly not 10. --Green Dragon 15:49, 7 March 2007 (MST)
Did you mean the pun of "striking out in a new direction" on a PrC based on movement? Still, I really like this. It's balanced, it's useful, it's unusual, it fits surprisingly well into a bunch of standard classes, and it's easily usable in a campaign (I'm thinking the rouge takes this class, gets a job running things, steals some stuff on the side, stays out of the way of the enemies during combat while getting in and out for his own attacks, and finally runs an artifact away from the bad dudes and gets it boomed and stuff while the other guys tackle another threat). Defiantly a 9. Armond 10:29, 9 March 2007 (MST)
Okay, so it is better than the average SRD prestige class. 9 is fine, I just want to make sure that D&D Wiki's balance rating system is begin used how it was intended to be used. --Green Dragon 10:33, 9 March 2007 (MST)
Fair enough, and thanks for checking. Armond 10:36, 9 March 2007 (MST)

Rating - 9/10[edit]

I agree wholeheartedly with the above comments. I just wanted to add my two cents to 1) validate the previous rating of 9, and 2) to put some inertia into place in case someone rates this lower, since I find it wholly deserving of it's ranking of 9. Great job! –EldritchNumen 01:39, 3 May 2007 (MDT)

Great Job[edit]

I realy like this one, but why is one of the requirements 40ft. movement speed? Just wondering. --Hatman 11:22, 27 February 2008 (MST)

I'd say it's to match the concept of the class:
The Couriers are an elite guild who boast that they can get a message or package to anyone, anywhere, in record time
Sledged (talk) 11:31, 27 February 2008 (MST)
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