Midnight RPG - Notes on Kyuad's Becoming
I've been reading about incorporeality lately, mainly because Kyuad is going to have to deal with that relatively soon.
Among the various extrapolations of the rules I found are some guidelines that detail how an incorporeal creature can move into another creature. Know one of the things that block it? Mage Armor. The spell creates a barrier of force around the target, which does improve the armor bonus to AC, but it's a force effect, so it affects incorporeal creatures just like corporeal ones. Bracers of defense mimic the mage armor spell, and so are also a force effect. That means Zal, as long as he's wearing those bracers, is trapped! :)
Now, I can think of two ways of handling this if it ever comes up:
1. His spirit cannot voluntarily disconnect itself from the body. I don't think this is ideal, because it would mean that anyone killed while mage armor is active would automatically fail the save to avoid becoming Fell. 2. If his spirit does disconnect, it is confined within the physical boundaries of the body, as long as the mage armor or bracers of defense are active.
I'd go with #2 personally, but that's up to you. Also keep in mind that no bodiless spirit is ever able to move into the space of a character with these effects active. So an animal with mage armor can't become astirax hotel. I think it would be great fun if Adam gets surprised by this somehow, but that's not really fair to him. Were it me, here's how I'd give him the chance to make these connections:
1. Knowledge: Spirits check to think along the lines of bodiless limitations. DC 20-ish. If this is successful, go to step 2. 2. Spellcraft check to see what Zal knows about force effects and how that limits bodiless form. DC 25+. If this is successful, go to step 3. 3. Wis check to realize that he'd be better off making sure that his body is not surrounded by a barrier of force if he ever needed to leave it. DC 20. If this fails, Int check to make the cognitive connections and determine that his spirit will be trapped. DC 25.
Of course, if we ever encounter a spirit of some kind, and it is prevented from moving into a body by one of these effects, it really should be up to Adam alone to figure things out about his character. That's enough of a hint all by itself.
I thought of something that I think is super-neat. A phantom item! Maybe it's a pendant, maybe it's a weapon, maybe it's a book. It exists only as an incorporeal presence, because at some point in its past a previous owner used magic to turn incorporeal near a nexus, and the energy of the nexus maintained the spell in perpetuity, long after the channeler's body had died (and not decomposed, because bacteria and bugs couldn't get to it), and the item laid unattended for decades. Now, having been incorporeal so long, it's in effect permanent. The implications of this are that the item can be seen, can exist in real space, but cannot be affected by anything corporeal. Tormented spirits have passed by and examined it, but unable to really consider their environment, passed it by. A thinking incorporeal creature (like Kyuad will become at level 20) can interact with it just fine. A creature with the ghost touch ability active (Kyuad) can also interact with it. For this character, it is a weightless incorporeal presence that can be moved and manipulated, and seen, but it still passes through other physical material, sort of like a reverse-ghost touch item.
So, since Kyuad has ghost touch active at all times thanks to the heroic path, he could "wear" or use this kind of item. If it's a pendant, it would be constantly floating weightless, even though it is limited by being moved when Kyuad's neck moves. If it were a weapon, Kyuad could grab it, sheath it (theoretically he could, because his ghost touch ability does extend to items he uses, and even projectiles fired by ranged weapons he uses), and attack people with it, but it would be hard to take it from him. If it were something like a book or belt, he could hold it, wear it, read it, turn the pages, carry it, etc just fine.
Maybe this is getting too close to asking for some Kyuad-only stuff, I don't know. That worked for Adam though. I'm thinking it would be kinda nice to get something (not necessarily a weapon) to replace the scythe though. And even if you only use this idea for one encounter, I think it would be neat for flavor and coolness factor.
One problem I'm going to run into is that Kyuad, when he loses his physicality, won't be able to use items unless they are imbued with the ghost touch property. (The rules say that an incorporeal creature can use ghost touch weapons as corporeal or incorporeal weapons, whichever is better at the time, so it stands to reason that the same thing can be said for a ghost touch shirt.) His true charm skullcap (which might be redundant at that point anyway), the oculus, his spellbooks, Durgaz - Kyuad won't be able to pick them up or move them. That is, unless being a creature with the ghost touch ability allows him to grab something and treat it as though it had the ghost touch ability (which would allow him to grab something, turning it incorporeal instantly, and then cause it to float around with him). I'll do some research on that.
So, I'm thinking about buying a feat with XP just before advancing to lvl 16. If that doesn't let me hit 16, that's fine. This is a breakdown of the feats Kyuad can take: Level 15: level-based (max. spell) Level 15: 1k XP buy Level 17: 1k XP buy Level 17: bonus feat from Channeler class (item creation or metamagic) Level 18: level-based Level 19: 1k XP buy Level 20: bonus feat from Channeler class (item creation or metamagic) Level 21: level-based Level 21: 1k XP buy
Here are the feats I'm considering for now and for later (I'm making a list for future reference too):
Ability Focus Efficient Item Creation Empower Turning Epic Spell Focus Ghostly Grasp Improved Counterspell Improved Turning Reach Spell Undead Mastery Vatic Gaze
Ability Focus - (MM) Add +2 to the DC for all saving throws against the special attack on which the creature focuses.
Note: This could apply to the Fort save required to resist his paralysis touch, the Will save to resist the negative energy touch, the Will save to resist the fear aura, or perhaps the Daunting Presence effect. Applied to the paralysis touch would be most useful, but I'm not sure that I want this ability to become enough of a focus of the character to need a feat to boost it.
Efficient Item Creation - (Epic feat) Select an item creation feat. Creating a magic item using that feat requires one day per 10,000 gp of the item’s market price, with a minimum of one day.
Note: Excellent feat. It requires 24 ranks in Knowledge (arcana) and Spellcraft though, so it's not available till level 20.
Empower Turning - (LM p. 26) You can turn or rebuke more undead than usual. After adding your level and Cha mod to your turning damage roll, multiply the result by 1-1/2.
Note: Rebuking is great when you need it. Numerically, this would change the total HD rebuked from a range of 20-30 to 30-45. That could mean the difference of three or four more creatures being rebuked, so that's kinda neat. This doesn't however, help Kyuad rebuke a higher-HD creature.
Epic Spell Focus - (SRD, Epic) Add +1 to the Difficulty Class for all saving throws against spells from the school of magic the character selects to focus on. This stacks with the bonuses from Spell Focus and Greater Spell Focus.
Note: requires at least level 17, because you have to be able to cast level 9 spells. Necromancy school, naturally.
Ghostly Grasp - (LM p. 27) You can wear, wield, and otherwise use corporeal items as though you were not incorporeal
Note: Okay, two problems with this one. First, you have to actually be incorporeal to get this feat, meaning that Kyuad can't get this till level 20 anyway. The other problem is that the result of this feat is rather stupid. Imagine a ghost floating around with a halberd and a suit of plate... floating with it. The ghost tries to go through a wall and gets stopped because the armor and weapon can't go through the wall. They didn't think this one through. It should say that the benefit is that the character gets to treat all items with which it comes in contact as though the item has the ghost touch property. That would allow the ghost to use the item as intended. But they didn't. And, it's fully possible that having ghost touch as a character mimics this just fine.
Improved Counterspell - When counterspelling, you may use a spell of the same school that is one or more spell levels higher than the target spell.
Note: Okay, there are 8 spell schools, and Kyuad has 3. Not awesome odds for this coming into use, especially since there's very little chance that anyone's ever going to cast a necromancy spell at Kyuad, and abjuration spells aren't usually used in combat, which is really the only time a counterspell is going to be attempted. This will be more useful when Kyuad gets the Transmutation school.
Improved Turning - You turn or rebuke creatures as if you were one level higher than you are in the class that grants you the ability.
Note: This allows Kyuad to turn creatures with HD in the range of Kyuad's level -1 to Kyuad's level +5 (a difference in +1 HD every time he attempts to rebuke). It also gives a +1 bonus to turning damage. Compared to Empower Turning, this bonus is nothing. Ultimately this feat is only worth taking if there aren't many other options.
Undead Mastery - (SRD, Epic) You may command up to ten times your level in HD of undead.
Note: requires Cha 21. A big block to taking this feat. Without an exception it will never be possible. But it would be cool.
Vatic Gaze - (PH2 p. 85) You can use detect magic at will. Also, as a swift action, you can attempt to determine an opponent's spellcasting ability. You make a Sense Motive check (DC 5 + target's caster level). If this check succeeds, you learn the highest-level spells the target is capable of casting. This benefit grants you no insight into spell-like or supernatural abilities.
Note: On a normal character, I would think this is not Midnight-appropriate. On Kyuad it actually seems kinda thematic.