Ranger Prestige Class

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MongooseMatt
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Ranger Prestige Class

Postby MongooseMatt » Fri Oct 10, 2003 9:03 pm

Hi guys,

More preview rules for you - this time, the Anla'Shok Ranger prestige class;

http://www.mongoosepublishing.com/babyl ... nloads.php

As always, let us know what you think!
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Postby jadrax » Fri Oct 10, 2003 9:55 pm

Looks good.

Not really sure why a Den'bok is an exotic weapon though, it seems to have the exact same stats as a quarterstaff. Might be better to make it a simple wepaon and replace the proficency with two-Weapon fighting (+ambidexterity if still running under 3.0) so they can use it as a double weapon.

Of course, giving rangers two-wepaon fighting just seems right for some reason....
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Postby ronbogard » Fri Oct 10, 2003 10:05 pm

VERY Nice!
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Postby Judge Walker » Fri Oct 10, 2003 10:36 pm

I assume this is to represent early Ranger characters (ie before the the Shadow War) as later in the series they were allowing even the Pak'ma'ra into the ranks of the Rangers.

Looks good.
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Postby MongooseMatt » Fri Oct 10, 2003 11:12 pm

Indeed. At a later date, there will be an ISA Ranger prestige class with less stringent entry requirements. However, we are all going to have to wait for the ISA to be set up first :)
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Postby Eryx » Sat Oct 11, 2003 1:20 am

Very nice. This going to appear in the Minbari sourcebook I take it?
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Postby August » Sat Oct 11, 2003 3:00 am

<A glimpse behind the curtain>

Jadrax, you bring up a good point; why is the Denn'bok an exotic weapon, requiring a feat to learn, when it is mechanically the same as a quarterstaff?

In this instance, the feat represents not the differences in quarterstaff versus Denn'bok fighting which is (with a few exceptions) the exact same style, but an attitude in the Minbari themselves. Since the feat is given for free to the only characters who should be legitimately using them, it is not like it consumes a slot.

The only characters that have to pay for it are the ones who have made a character point to take the time and effort needed to learn the oddly balanced, collapsable ferricite alloy weapon from a culture that is not likely the character's own.

There are also fighting styles (coming in one or more future sources) that will depend on the feat as an entrance requirement. More on these later, but suffice to say, there is a reason for the feat to exist.

Hope that helps,
-August

(P.S. Remember, a Games Master is always free to say that a character can pick up and use a Denn'bok (or any other weapon for that matter) and use it without penalty. That's purely a campaign matter.)
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Postby Morden » Sat Oct 11, 2003 3:26 am

msprange wrote:Indeed. At a later date, there will be an ISA Ranger prestige class with less stringent entry requirements. However, we are all going to have to wait for the ISA to be set up first :)
Based on what was in Legend of the Rangers and some of the later B5 episodes, I wouldn't make the ISA ranger any more than a 5 level prestige class. These guys looked like they were trained well enough, but they were very specialized.
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Postby psyclonejack » Sat Oct 11, 2003 5:06 am

Well Handled.

I have a couple of players that want to eventually become rangers. I have been debating until I saw some rules. It always appeared the ranger were a sort of Ninja, if you will. A multipurpose weapon which can sneak in, kill anything, hack the computer, know right where to walk, get the info, and sneak out. IE never mess with a ranger in a dark alley.

I LOVE the fact that the feats are good but not great, and the bonuses, are good but not great. This shows the ranger has good skills and talents, but, dwells mostly on the reputation and fear of others. Those that know they exsist have heard tales of great feats by rangers, and stories make them out to be PPG proof and able to tear groups of men apart without breaking a sweat.

So in a sense, having a ranger in the party will not throw things out of balance, but simply encourage the roleplaying that will be needed to keep the illusion of the all cool, super ability rangers going. Very well handled indeed.

My only suggestion would be an addition to the Garb. 1DR is nice but a Plus to move silently and Hide would be nice too. I know the feat included in the class grants a bonus to hide and move silently, but I see these as stackable bonuses. The bonus granted from the feat is the ability to look around and see hiding places, notice where to step and where not to step to avoid noise, etc. However a bonus from the Garb, would simply be the lack of material making noise, the lack of reflected light from the materials used, and the density of the Garb to mask heavy breathing as well as any jingle from accessories concealed within.

My defense would simply be, how many times did you see marcus just simply vanish, and another character that was talking to him, turn around and say something along the lines of, "I hate it when he does that."

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Postby jadrax » Sat Oct 11, 2003 8:52 am

Ok, the idea that its balanced differently makes a lot of sense.
Mongoose August wrote: Since the feat is given for free to the only characters who should be legitimately using them, it is not like it consumes a slot.
Unsure about this, Neroon was one of the greatest users, but he was never a Ranger. I got the impression that a lot of the militery caste, especially officers where trainind in its use, and curently they would have to buy the feat. Unless theres some adept of the din'bok class in the Minbari book to cover this, which would be cool.
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Postby Hellbore » Sat Oct 11, 2003 1:49 pm

There are two ways to look at Neroons use of the pike.

1: Neroon was a high ranking officer and the study and use of a traditional weapon probbably wouldn't be unusual. It would be a sign of his respect for his culture and history.

2: Going with the 3.5 racial weapon idea why not just start all Minbari Warrior Cast with the feat. It would, most likely be one of the first weapons that a Minbari Warrior would learn to use. Also, as it is traditionally passed from generation to generation this makes even more sense.
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Ranger Staff and Feats

Postby El Cid » Sat Oct 11, 2003 2:36 pm

I'd suggest the following as feats that the Ranger would get as part of his/her training: (Put the right word in place of Staff)

Weapon Focus - Staff (+1 to Attack roll)

Weapon Specialization - Staff (+2 to damage from Staff attack) Requires Weapon Focus - Staff

Surprise Attack - The Ranger may extend hes Stall as a Free Action which requires a Touch Attack to hit. 1d6 damage, no strength bonus, plus Weapon Specialization additional damage if applicable

Since many PC will be constructed w/o a high Strength Attribute, Weapon Finess (Use Dexterity instead of Strength modifier to hit) would be a good feat to consider. I also think that the Rangers in general appeared to be very quick and graceful so this would be consistant in the game.

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Postby Judge Walker » Sun Oct 12, 2003 5:45 pm

I think Neroon might be exception. He stated in his duel with Marcus that he had been traind by Durhan (that is the Masters name correct?) himself, a Ranger Teacher.

Also, in the fighting scenes in "In The Beginning" most Minbari are shown using something akin to Punjabi Punching Daggers, not Pikes.

Going on this I would say that the Minbari Fighting Pike is a rather specialized weapon that not a lot of peoele have mastered.
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Postby ShadowScout » Sun Oct 12, 2003 8:56 pm

Judge Walker wrote:I think Neroon might be exception. He stated in his duel with Marcus that he had been traind by Durhan (that is the Masters name correct?) himself, a Ranger Teacher.

Well, he might be exceptional among minbari warriors, but not the exception in this case.
Also, in the fighting scenes in "In The Beginning" most Minbari are shown using something akin to Punjabi Punching Daggers, not Pikes.
Most??? ONE! The rest you can't see...
Neroon was one Warrior with a pike... the one who tested the integrity of his skull during his secret negotiations on Delenn's ship ("Rumors, Bargains and lies" IIRC) was another. Only because we don't see that many Minbari warriors wielding pikes doesn't mean only rangers get these toys.
Going on this I would say that the Minbari Fighting Pike is a rather specialized weapon that not a lot of peoele have mastered.
The fighting pike is a traditional Minbari weapon, but not limited to rangers. However, many minbari don't get one because they can't reach the level of skill the Denn'bok masters require before they'll give out one of those things. So I'd say it and any feats that may go with it shouldn't be Ranger-only, those should be "ranger and minbari only". Remember, it's "Minbari Fighting Pike", not "Ranger Fighting Pike" - it's just that All rangers train with it, while not all Minbari warriors do - only those who show interest and qualify to the Denn'bok masters.

Personally I'd not give the rangers "exclusive" feats... however, those suggested sound nice for high-level denn'bok masters. It just wouldn't make sense for Neroon not to have those available (since he's better with the pike then Marcus, if just by a bit), or for Neroon to be Ranger-class (come on...) so unless there's a way to come up with a "sub-class" to represent Rangers or Minbari Warriors spending extra time with the Denn'bok I'd rather forgo them entirely (and if that were to be done, one'd need to do something similar for all characters who are also martial artists in addition to their standard job... after all, the average "hongkong cop" can't do even a tenth of what we see in certain movies, yes? :wink: But it should be possible to play such a character in the game if a PC really wants to... without making them as effectve as those movies make people believe - hey, it's B5, not "killer ninjas from outer space"... :D )

OK, that was my 0,50 €...
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Postby Judge Walker » Sun Oct 12, 2003 9:04 pm

Uhm, isn't it a little premature to say that Minbari Pike feats are only regulated to Rangers? The Minbari book hasn't even hit the streets, in Canada anyway, and the Rangers book is a ways off yet. Why not wait and see what transpires first before going off half-cocked?

Besides, as you say the Pike has a special status in the Warrior culture, they would only want the best of the best to have one. The Rangers are the best...and I am sure once the Minbari info comes out then there will be other classes that will be so considered...Perhaps even a Denn'bok Master PrC, or some such.
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Postby jadrax » Sun Oct 12, 2003 9:21 pm

Judge Walker wrote:Uhm, isn't it a little premature to say that Minbari Pike feats are only regulated to Rangers? The Minbari book hasn't even hit the streets, in Canada anyway, and the Rangers book is a ways off yet. Why not wait and see what transpires first before going off half-cocked?
It's hardly feedback if we don't comment.

The quote was that everyone who should have the feat would get it for free. Now as i have seen the Alyt class and know it's not included in that i'm asking if thats actually true.

For all I know there is a minbari pike master prestige class in the minbari book, and my concern is already addressed, but it dosen't hurt to ask does it?
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Postby ShadowScout » Sun Oct 12, 2003 9:34 pm

Besides, as you say the Pike has a special status in the Warrior culture, they would only want the best of the best to have one. The Rangers are the best...
In Valen's time - yes.
After B5 and in ISA times - yes.
Before the EA/Minbari war and B5 though... well, watch "In the Beginning". In that time the Rangers are seen mostly as a relict, an ceremonial unit carried on the shoulders of Real warriors to honor Valen's legacy, a bunch of tired old men believing in legends and waiting for a day that will never come. Certainly NOT the pride of the Warrior Caste, or the militant clans... and the RPG rules should (no, must) be flexible enough to represent it all.
That's why the guys in charge put up the previews and come by and peek at what we're ranting here for after all - to see if there might be anything they haven't thought of (Among other things). So let's think about it some more :wink: :) :D
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Postby Judge Walker » Sun Oct 12, 2003 11:11 pm

ShadowScout wrote:"...and the RPG rules should (no, must) be flexible enough to represent it all...
Kind of my point. The rules haven't really come out yet. Now, when they do and the problem isn't fixed then is the time to get excited. As, you say at least TPTB care enough to get advance feedback before the product rolls. :D
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Postby Guest » Tue Oct 14, 2003 1:24 pm

I really like these rules. My gaming group needed something to lead us in the right direction for the game we are in, and this hits the nail. One question: Why is the class only a 5 level instead of a 10 like in the core book?

This has bouyed my gaming group's hopes for B5 as a RPG, as most of us are old enough that we watched the series originally and really have waited for a good system for it... We were rather dissapointed in the initial release.

Much better. Thanks guys, looks nice.
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Postby KDLadage » Tue Oct 14, 2003 1:49 pm

A couple of things:

* In Monte Cook's discussions of Prestige Classes, he distinctly suggests that Class and/or Character Level not be used as a pre-requisite. The point here is that very few people would identify themselves as having a class and nobody would actually be able to judge what "level" they were in that class. Thus, the pre-requisites should always reflect that which is measurable: skills (tests can be given), abilities (one can test strength, dexterity, constitution and, in some cases, even intelligence, wisdom and --to a degree- charisma), feats (either you can do it or you cannot do it). Thus, I would suggest replacing the "5th level character" prerequisite with something else. A set of skills, traits or what-have-you...

* Since a game-master must approve any use of aprestige class, I would re-word a few of the pre-requisites such that this is not restated over and over. Simple state (for example) that, as a general rule, Telepaths are not allowed to be Rangers (although some extreme exceptions do exist).

* Advancement Restriction: although I like this, in principle, the mechaic is a bit clunky. I would suggest placing something akin to the Paladin's Code of Honor in here -- describe what a Ranger must act like. Then, indicate that if the character violates this Code of Honor, then the character cannot advance in this class until they have first advanced in another class. Something to that effect.

* A denn'bok is a quarter-staff. Granted, the weapon may be exotic (in the sense that it is cool how it folds in on itself); but its _use_ follows the patterns of a quarterstaff, and such the use of the weapon should not require an exotic weapon feat. It would be sufficiant to say that only Rangers and a few select Minbari of the Warrior caste have them...

* 5-levels: I am torn in this. The Rangers are a dedicated bunch; as such, 10 levels might be more appropriate. Again, citing Monte Cook, a 5-level prestige class should (1) be one that indicates a specialization in training. Generally, the individual would not identify themselves as being this prestige class, just having the training. a 10-level prestige class is one that requires a lot of training and disciplin and characters would identify themselves as being that prestige class. In other words, Marcus _is_ a Ranger -- thus, according to the words of Monte Cook, Ranger should be a 10-level Prestige class. Still, I am not sure what else you would want to add to the class, or how far you would want to spread the abilities out.

(1) Please keep in mind that even Monte has broken this rule, so it is not a big deal if Mongoose continues that trend. It just happens to be a rule I like. ;)

Overall: Very nice. I like it.
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