Wardancer

Written by mrbunnyban.

Wardancer

Concept
- Tempo fighter theme
- Different dance styles, variation for multi engagement or single target focus. NOT a dedicated dps or tank class. This is a melee spoiler or tactical class with unusual and unique ways to tip battle in favour of the players. The war dancer is very helpful for managing a large number of enemies and particularly good at enabling comebacks in the later rounds.
- Many abilities which key of escalation, and has very limited control over escalation dice
- Dex based mostly, but some features key off Charisma
- Design: The War dancer is built with the features of 13th age held in mind specifically and is meant to help fill in some holes in the system. The War Dancer is particularly helpful in locking down large numbers of enemies, and is a good choice for parties which are heavy with vulnerable spell casters and ranged party members.
- Complexity: Different. Not so much complexity in the build or numbers/resources to keep track off, but more tactical options are present.


Features
War dance:
- You MAY use the middle of Dex/Con/Cha to determine your AC.

- Gear: Same as rogue. Your choice of weapon really doesn't matter. You are always considered using two weapons no matter what you're actually using (so that you don't actually have to choose a two weapon combination to enjoy the roll on natural 2) and you always use d8 as your base weapon dice while war dancing regardless of what weapon you're holding in your hands. Therefore, go crazy with whatever it is you want to dance with.

- Some "weapon" suggestions: ceremonial daggers, a handcrossbow, a pole, batons, a chakram, a spiked chain, a length of cloth, a hat and a walking stick.

- Base stats and gear stats the same as a rouge.

- To start a war dance, you must first succeed to engage an enemy. This enemy will be your default target when using the Encircling version of the dance. Then declare if you are using Weaving version (multi engagement) or Encircling version (single engagement), and what dance style you are using. You may change from Encircling dance war dance to the Weaving war dance and vice versa at the beginning of your turn.

- When using the Encircling dance, engagement rules apply as normal.


- When using the Weaving dance, you can pseudo-engage additional nearby enemies as if you took a move action to engage those enemies (ignore oportunity attacks from current engagements). However, you are only considered engaged for the purpose of drawing opportunity attacks from movement. Both you and the enemy draw opportunity attacks from movement in this way. The number of additional enemies is equal to your Dexterity or Charisma modifier.
This form of pseudo-engagement can be intercepted, and the additional enemies can disengage as per normal disengagement rules. When you use your standard action to attack, you must randomly choose one of the pseudo-engaged targets (targets chosen by GM works too) but not your default target. You are still engaged normally to your default target. The pseudo-engagement ends if you change to the Encircling dance.

Summary: Multi-engage a number of nearby enemies equal to your Dex/Cha mod... but only take opportunity attacks on movement. If you attack, you randomly attack one of these enemies.



-Dance styles

Choose ONE of following war dance styles

Alternatively, the War Dancer has access to all these dance styles. They must choose one to use at the beginning of the battle. (The original version is to reduce the number of choices the player needs to make and let the game proceed faster)

Constricting Hurricane style
Weaving dance: On odd escalation dice (or 6+), engaged enemies have a penalty to disengage from you equal to the escalation dice.
Encircling dance: On even escalation dice, on a succssful hit from you also inflict Confused until the end of your next turn.
Feat A: You gain a +2 attack bonus to any opportunity attacks.
Feat C: During this dance, all engaged enemies are Stuck until they succeed the disengage roll.
Feat E: During this dance, all engaged enemies are Hampered until they succeed the disengage roll.


Blade Storm Stye
Weaving dance: On odd escalation dice (or 6+), you gain a further bonus to attack equal to the escalation dice on top of the normal attack bonus. This bonus is capped by your DEX or CHA mod, whichever is higher.
Encircling dance: On even escalation dice, on a succssful hit from you also inflicts Vulnerable until the end of your next turn.
Feat A: Your attack bonus from this dance is no longer capped by your DEX or CHA mod.
Feat C: If you started your turn using this dance style, all enemies engaged by you take your level in damage. Double this damage if only one target is engaged.
Feat E: During this dance, you may attack all engaged targets for half damage during these dances.

Flowing Currents style
Weaving dance: On odd escalation dice (or 6+), you gain bonus to AC equal to the escalation dice.
Encircling dance: On even escalation dice, on a succssful hit you also inflicts Dazed until the end of your next turn.
Feat A: During this dance, if an engaged enemy rolls a natural 5 or less on their attack, you get a free attack against that enemy for half damage.
Feat C: The bonus also applies to PD.
Feat E: The bonus also applies to MD.

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Talents
Choose three of the following class talents (gain 4 at champion and 5 at epic)

Desperate Cresendo
When a crit is rolled to hit you, or you roll a natural 1 to attack, you increase the escalation dice by 1.
Feat A: Crits against your nearby allies or a natural 1 rolled by nearby allies also qualify for the increase in escalation dice.
Feat C: Once per battle, increase the escalation dice by 1 when you are staggered.
Feat E: Once per battle, increase the escalation dice by 1 when a nearby ally is staggered.

Double Beat
On odd (or 6+) escalation dice, you may make an additional standard action that is not a move or attack.

Indomitable Stride
On even escalation dice, you may take an additional move action.
Feat A: If you only take one move action on even escalation dice, the move action ignores opportunity attacks.
Feat C: If you only take one move action on even escalation dice, the move action cannot be intercepted.
Feat E: If you declare that you will only take one move action on even escalation dice, you are immune to the Stuck and Hampered conditions for that round (beginning with the start of your turn).

Dramatic Impact
Once a battle: You may reduce the current escalation dice by 1 to increase the the damage of your attack by 100%. You may declare this when a hit is confirmed. (If the hit is a crit, the damage is tripled, not quadrupled.)
Feat A: The value of escalation dice that can be sacrificed is equal to your Charisma modifier. Increase your damage by 100% for each escalation dice sacrifieced this way.
Feat C: You also gain a bonus to attack equal to your Charisma modifier for the attack. You may declare this power when you miss an attack (the modified attack roll will hit if it is high enough).
Feat E: You may use this power as often as you like in a battle. Other restrictions are maintained.

Dance partners switch
1/round, on odd escalation dice, you can force a nearby enemy to switch one your allies it is engaged with to another ally it is not engaged with (or yourself). This forced engagement switch does not draw opportunity attacks or any other effects. The ally is moved into the appropriate position if able, otherwise the switch fails. (Stuck enemies are unable to move)
Feat A: You may switch an ally's engaged target instead of an enemy in the same way. The enemy is moved to the appropriate position if able, otherwise the switch fails.
Feat C: You can pop free one ally (not yourself) engaged to an enemy instead. It is now engaged to you.
Feat E: You can choose to pop free all nearby allies from enemies, but all of these enemies are now engaged normally to you. They are compelled to attack you if able with their first attack that round.

Tempo Setter
At the beginning of the round, on odd escalation dice, you may gain d4 to your initiative roll (or move up one place in the initiative order if your GM prefers for management).
On even escalation dice, you may reduce your initiative roll by d4 (or move down one place in the initiative order).
Feat A: You may add or subtract to a nearby ally's initiative order instead.
Feat C: You may add or subtract to an engaged enemy's initiative order instead.
Feat E: You may use this power as a free interrupt at the beginning of someone's turn (as appropriate to your feat selection) instead of at the beginning of the round. You cannot cause someone to lose their turn that round, but can postphone the current turn to later. If you move the current turn earlier, that character's turn still proceeds as normal until the next round.

Mob Controller
Full regular engagement rules apply for all engaged targets while using the Weaving war dance. So engagement rules to spell casting and ranged attacks apply as normal for the additional enemies engaged.
Feat A: Your Weaving dances engages double your Dexterity or Charisma modifier in nearby enemies.
Feat C: On even escalation dice, you can draw in one far away enemy or ally to nearby range.
Feat E: On even escalation dice, all engaged targets are compelled to move with you if you decide to move (no opportunity attacks are drawn).

Singling Out
When using an Encirling dance, you enjoy a +2 bonus to your defences as long as you are not engaged with any other targets.
Feat A: You can change the default target of your war dance at the beginning of your turn to another engaged target.
Feat C: The default target of your war dance must always choose you when picking targets to attack during the Encircling dance.
Feat E: You automatically pop-free from all enemies except your default target at the beginning of your turn if you switch to an Encricling Dance.

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Notes: Managing player actions and choices

There are generally only one choice to make at any time, that is whether to use Encircling or Weaving. Some players may want a third choice, that being how to manipulate the initiative order to their advantage.

The player should group together all the effects which happen when the escalation dice is even and odd separately to better manage all the results that can happen during those rounds.

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  • I understand this is likely still kind of early in development, but this idea seems pretty interesting, so I wanted to give a couple thoughts:
    There doesn't seem to be any specific reason for the low weapon damage; I understand it's not a dedicated damage dealer, but d6s are pretty low damage for a non-muliclassed character. I'd understand it if the Weaving was a multi-attack (even d8s against everything would be insane), but since it's a random target, it seems less necessary. Not saying they should be dancing so hard, they roll d10s every turn, but d6s seem rather low.
    Given the amount of emphasis you placed on deciding which dance style to use at the beginning of your turn, I'd expect to be able to have more than one. Even if there were a talent that gave you a second style, it would make the class that much more dynamic, and would let them have a little more thought to their actions. I understand there's a low amount of styles, and there's only so many ideas one could have, but it's just a thought.
    Isn't the Epic feat for Desperate Crescendo a little redundant? The Adventure feat says that you can increase the escalation die by one with "attack rolls by or against your nearby allies"; even assuming you mean "by or against, respectively" (so, they roll a nat one, they take a crit), then the Epic feat doesn't add anything to the talent. Unless you mean if they also rolled for, like, a background check, but that seems somewhat situational. Given how Epic tier means you should feel awesome, maybe make it so that you can increase the escalation die by 1 when YOU roll a crit.
    Overall, this seems like a neat idea. I like the idea of playing a spoiler, and a melee spoiler with little complexity but high potential seems really cool.

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  • Good catch on the d6! That was a feature do to a now irrelevant talent. Double Beat used to give a full standard action that could be used as an attack, you see. So it was necessary to balance down the offensive power of the class. But that talent was overwhelmingly strong, rendering other talents useless in comparison, hence the current version of Double Beat is weaker.

    I hear you on the dances- in the original version, the dancer had access to all dances and could choose which dance to use every battle. But consider that a lot of the main point of the 13th Age was de-emphasizing battle complexity in favor of story elements, allowing faster battle resolutions. The War Dancer gives the player quite a number of unique choices to make on how to change the flow of the battle, and to be more consistent with 13th age it was deemed better to reduce the number of choices the player has to make on their turn. 13th age combat is meant to be faster, in comparison to 4th edition D&D. I suppose the War Dancer needs a real field test to really determine if it slows down the game or if players are able to quickly take their turns when playing the War Dancer.

    You're right about Desperate Cresendo - it is too situational to be of proper use even if it effects saving throws. I've altered it so that it kicks in when the War Dancer is staggered.

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