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Author Topic: Personal Lieutenant and Animal Partner - Fixes for low level play.  (Read 923 times)
Jackal_mkII
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« Reply #15 on: November 06, 2012, 10:27:15 AM »

Also, after re-reading things, mounts count as Standard NPCs, while PLs and ACs count as Specials.

There's an upgrade to make purchased mounts count as Special NPCs.  While not cheap, the cost is still coin instead of reputation.

This may be true, but also consider that if you are merely buying a simple horse with Animal Companion, you're probably not making the most of the Feat in the first place. The total XP value of the AC can be increased, and the basic horse could be upgraded as necessary. If all you want is a basic mount, buying one with cash is definitely the better option. If you want something more grand (and/or customized), then the Feat would be appropriate. The same could also be said for the Personal Lieutenant. At least that's how I see it.

I have considered it and it is certainly true that you can get more XP than a typical war horse uses.  GM permitting, you could even spend extra XP towards improving your existing mount, though you would need 8 XP from 2 additional feats to actually match a coin purchase.  You could even go so far as to get something that isn't normally on the mount list.

However, no matter what you pick, any conceivable NPC you could build would be outclassed by a similar one found in the wild by 4 Threat Levels; be it guards, men-at-arms, wizards, griffons, war horses, elephants, blacksmiths, courtiers, imps or dragons.

I am in a game currently with several characters who have Followers and Personal Lieutenants.  They were pretty good at first level (pretty good, but not really overpowered) and even second level.  Now, at level 8, they have pretty much faded into irrelevance.  Attack checks, skill checks, defense, initiative; these have all fallen quite a ways behind the curve.  About the only thing that has kept up has been vitality.  The only one that sees any regular use any more is the Wizard as it can cast unlimited Cure Light Wounds so it makes sure everyone is healed at all times.  The other ones are kept hidden away when anything dangerous happens or are just left home altogether as the risk is too high they will get killed and end up costing reputation.


Point taken. I guess it'll come down to what kind of game your GM is running then as to which is the better option. If they allow your wizard to cast Cure Wounds unlimited times, I don't see why a few ranks of Veteran would be out of the question. So far our group hasn't experienced any use out of them, but the GM does want one when it's his turn to play, so I'll have to keep this in mind for that.
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ludomastro
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« Reply #16 on: November 06, 2012, 07:20:07 PM »

I've never prevented my players from adding a level or two of Veteran to their NPCs.  You can even justify it as spending time training the PL or AP.  The only thing is the insane levels of health they can rack up.

So, here's the rules at my table: 1) No more than three levels of Veteran (keeps the PL or AP less than the hero) and 2) no more than Health III (keep the Vitality insanity away from my table). 
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Mister Andersen
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« Reply #17 on: November 06, 2012, 08:18:09 PM »

Now vitality I agree is problematic. An interesting approach might be (Health bonus + Con mod) x 10
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Jackal_mkII
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« Reply #18 on: November 06, 2012, 11:33:29 PM »

Ok, how's this for an idea? Since Personal Lts. are at level 1 for effectively 4 levels, and their Vitality doubles once the party hits level 5 (assuming I can do maths right) they would be hitting 200% of their initial Vitality score.  Over the course of the first 4 levels, would it make sense to increase their Vitality by 25% each time the party levels up? 125% at TL 2, 150% at TL 3, 175% at TL 4?
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« Reply #19 on: November 07, 2012, 01:44:05 AM »

I think I'd pretty much NEVER aprove veteran as part of a PL (it clashes directly with class abilities like the captain's gamebreaker - and supercedes it with a truely trivial cost). I also don't think I'd allow players to EVER equip them via XP cost. Had enough years of abuse with people selling off the private jets their contacts had in modern settings.

Honestly I don't think veteran even works with them - since their threat level is SET by the feat, not by the adventure +X levels of  veteran.
« Last Edit: November 07, 2012, 01:51:29 AM by Morgenstern » Logged

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ludomastro
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« Reply #20 on: November 07, 2012, 02:48:34 AM »

I think I'd pretty much NEVER aprove veteran as part of a PL (it clashes directly with class abilities like the captain's gamebreaker - and supercedes it with a truely trivial cost). I also don't think I'd allow players to EVER equip them via XP cost. Had enough years of abuse with people selling off the private jets their contacts had in modern settings.

Honestly I don't think veteran even works with them - since their threat level is SET by the feat, not by the adventure +X levels of  veteran.

I'd be interested in the "official" ruling on that one.  And, perhaps more importantly, the thought process that went into the design.
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« Reply #21 on: November 09, 2012, 02:09:39 PM »

Honestly I don't think veteran even works with them - since their threat level is SET by the feat, not by the adventure +X levels of  veteran.

I have to disagree.

Veteran (+2 XP per grade): The NPC’s Threat Level increases by 1 per grade (maximum Threat Level 20).

A regular NPC's TL is set by the adventure. The sidekick's is set by the feat. Both are then modified by Veteran.

I tend to be inconsistent on Veteran on sidekicks. I allowed (actually, I suggested) it on one Eidolon (since before he was built the player described it as a gift from his teacher). Now it does help that this NPC is largely an outsider C-3PO meets Alfred.

Anohter PC wanted veteran on her former runt of the litter Andoran Mastiff who she just finished training. I didn't allow it there. In the future when its XP allowance increases I might.
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