Talk:Assassin, Tome (3.5e Class)

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Table Formatting[edit]

I have no idea what I did wrong with the tables. The Spells Known has its 6th-level column filled in the edit, but not on the display. I've tried comparing it to other tables, but I can't find my error. Oh merciful Powers That Be, I beseech you to correct this error. Genowhirl 19:35, 12 November 2008 (MST)

Done.--Lord Dhazriel 19:38, 12 November 2008 (MST)
Much obliged.Genowhirl 19:55, 12 November 2008 (MST)
Happy to help as alway.--Lord Dhazriel 19:59, 12 November 2008 (MST)


Power - 4/5 I give this class a 4 out of 5 because its powerful but no instant kill that assassins are known for.

Rating removed since no reason was given. --Green Dragon 15:55, 4 March 2009 (MST)

Wording - 5/5 -- 01:45, 13 January 2009 (MST)

Rating removed since no reason was given. --Green Dragon 15:55, 4 March 2009 (MST)

Formatting - 5/5 -- 01:45, 13 January 2009 (MST)

Rating removed since no reason was given. --Green Dragon 15:55, 4 March 2009 (MST)

Flavor - 2/5 I give this class a 2 out of 5 because its a great thing but has no real personality to it other than a rogue that can actually kill plenty and easy in a fight other than just being able to survive a fight and being more useful for the rp of an rpg -- 01:45, 13 January 2009 (MST)

Well you shouldn't give such a low flavor rating to a variant. One cannot alway a Red Assassin of the Fiery Doom Guild, especially for base classes and giving personality often limit the player RP. --Lord Dhazriel 11:25, 13 January 2009 (MST)
I agree the Assassin is a bit flat, compared to some of the PrCs or the Barbarian, but it's explicitly a set of skills aimed at killing things efficiently, to be used for whatever purpose. It *does* say that hired killers share techniques and skills with demon hunters. So while I might wish for it be a bit more of Teh Awesome, I do enjoy having such a blank slate to make a character with, rather than being straight-jacketed into being good/evil or, even worse to me, lawful/chaotic. -- Genowhirl 15:25, 13 January 2009 (MST)


Power - 1/5 I'd say this class is a little broken, ESPECIALLY for a base class. The Death Attack damage bonus progression is exceptionally ridiculous, being eqaul to the Assassin's level plus 2, even at level one. Doing 4d6 damage every other round is too much power for level one. Other things I dislike about the power are the seven spell levels as opposed to the usual four, the poison use at level one, the posion immunity at level one, and several more specific abilities gained at higher levels. Something I noticed was the permanent Mind Bank effect at high levels. Any smart assassin at those level already HAS a permanent mind blank and nondetection, so its unnecessary. I'd make a list, but there are a lot of other abilities that are too powerful or simply not needed. -Valentine the Rogue 14:20, 27 January 2009 (MST)

4d6 every other round is out of line? Huh? A Rogue with a shortsword does the same thing. Surgo 14:57, 27 January 2009 (MST)
(n)d6 at level (even) is perhaps a better example, for 10 levels the assassin can far outstrip a rogue in terms of damage output. A party with such a class would make short work of most evenly leveled and slightly higher leveled encounters. Jpaq25 12:05, 4 March 2009 (MST)
No, they can't outstrip a rogue at level 10. If you want to make a statement like that, you need to prove it. Surgo 12:52, 4 March 2009 (MST)
I was referring to every other level (1,3,5,7,9,11,13,15,17,19). This adds up to 10 levels over the course of the life of the character. At each odd level their average "death attack" damage is higher than a rogues sneak attack, even taking into account two rounds of sneak attack to one round of death attack. At level one a rogue has 1d6 sneak attack, assuming they can get two successive sneak attacks to hit they would do on average 6-8 (average roll of a d6= is between a 3 and a 4) extra points of damage. At the same level an assassin has 3d6 assuming they are able to get a death attack to hit that adds on average 9-12 points of damage. The chance of getting two sneak attacks on the same target is approximately the same as getting a death attack to hit. Jpaq25 18:09, 4 March 2009 (MST)
Okay. At level 1, The Assassin can do weapon damage (plus applicable modifiers, of course), plus 3d6, with two rounds of work. The Rogue can do weapon damage, plus modifers, plus 1d6, every round (assuming he's flanking or something). Or he could TWF to take a shot at double-weapon damage, some modifiers, and 2d6 a round. This could get quite crazy with a specific build, such as the Halfling Hurler. Anyway, the Rogue's ability to act every round gives him a few extra DPR. Oh, and this is level 1, so he can't make himself invisible, so he only gets one Death Attack in at the very first round of combat, if he sees the opponents before they see him. --Genowhirl 18:12, 4 March 2009 (MST)
By your logic and the class description there is nothing preventing an assassin from taking TWF as well. This would apply the same chance of "double" weapon damage (plus modifiers) to the additional damage from a death attack. For a short sword at first level this raises the damage potential to on average 15-20 (using the previously supplied average values of dice rolls) which is equal to a rogue of first level (hitting sneak attack twice and with both weapons). At second level however the damage done by death attack increases whereas the damage of sneak attack does not. --Jpaq25 20:26, 4 March 2009 (MST)
The Assassin can take TWF. But I'm pretty sure he won't be able to use it on a Death Attack, since the wording says the *next attack* is a Death Attack. That implies that only the first attack roll is the Death Attack, and if it misses you're SOL. Like, I said, the wording regulates when you can get this pile of damage.--Genowhirl 19:32, 4 March 2009 (MST)

Wording - 5/5 It wasn't bad by any means, much better in fact than some other classes I've seen. I approve. -Valentine the Rogue 14:20, 27 January 2009 (MST)

Formatting - 4/5 While it was good, I think you may have some of the information in the wrong place, and there was nothing beyond the basic information; you didn't have epic progression, you cut out the lore and in the world sections, and you have no starting package or example NPC. -Valentine the Rogue 14:20, 27 January 2009 (MST)

Flavor - 4/5 The idea and concept are good, but your execution (haha) leaves something to be desired. Like I said above; lore, in the world, starting package, sample NPC, etc. While the flavor can be made by the player or the DM, make soething for them to work with or give them an inspiration or idea. -Valentine the Rogue 14:20, 27 January 2009 (MST)

Death Attack isn't as bad as it seems, seeing as how you can only use it every other round, at the very most--that brings the Damage-per-round up to about a Rogue. Furthermore, direct damage is one of the least efficient ways of disabling enemies once you get past level 5 or so when monsters and NPCs have enough HP to get out of the Rocket Launcher Tag phase; Really, if I were playing this class below level 5, I'd be using Color spray or something rather than Death Attack. The spell list, if you notice, is Bard casting, and it's restricted to Illusion, Necromancy, and Divination--and out of those, Illusion probably has one of the better uses--Invisibility will let you use the Death Attack at the absolute most you can (every other round). Anyway, this F&K work, and it uses sort of the same principle as the Barbarian--If your main shtick is inherently suboptimal (in this case, dealing direct damage to a single enemy), its main effect should be brought up to the point where at least it's doing something useful. -- Genowhirl 15:04, 27 January 2009 (MST)


Power - 4/5 I give this class a 6 out of 5 because the death attack option in addition to the spellcasting allows for insane amounts of damage that end up far outstripping a rogue of equal level. Simply put the damage is over the top. If the death attack progression was slowed to maybe a 1d6/2 level increase it would make more sense, as it is then put on approximately equal par with a rogues sneak attack progression.--Jpaq25 10:58, 4 March 2009 (MST)

Sigh. Lemme try to explain this again: The Death Attack can only be attempted, at most, every other round. And when you attempt it, you also have to hit with it. That's hampered a little by Medium BAB, and hampered even moreso in low-level play where combat really lies on the fall of the dice. Furthermore, dealing damage is a very inefficient way to bring things down, as weird as that sounds--Monster HP by CR increases more quickly than players can reduce it (one reason why using attacks and abilities which target saves are more effective). Let's say level 10. That's 12d6 Death Attack damage, right?
In my review of the creatures at CR 10 (you know, the ones you're supposed to be fighting at level 10), I'm seeing a disparity between monster HP--one subset has less HP--around 50 or so, and then the other set (dragons and demons and giants, oh my!) have more than a hundred HP. Sometimes well over a hundred. If an Assassin hits one of them with a Death Attack, that's 12d6 damage. If he hit and miraculously rolled a 6 for damage 12 times, he'd do 72 damage--about half of a Fire Giant's HP. However, that's so unlikely we can't base anything on that, so let's average. Call it 36 damage at that level. That's 36 bonus damage, every other round. He might be able to full attack on a Death Attack, in which case we're looking at 72 or so damage on average at CR 10, every other round. That's about 36 damage a round (again, on average). A level 10 Rogue could easily be averaging the same with the right feat or two, and wouldn't be doing nothing for a round in between attacks.
Everyone hangs up on the Death Attack. The problem is, they just see that pile of d6's for damage and don't realize that the conditions for using it are self-regulating. An Assassin has to use two rounds to do a Death Attack (one for studying, and one for attempting), and he's also got to find ways to make his opponent lose their Dexterity bonus--early on, this is not easy; only being able to nail enemies who are denied their Dex bonus means you might be able to attempt it once at the beginning of an encounter. And even if you qualify for it, you've got to actually hit the opponent for all that damage to work.
As for the spellcasting--take a look at the Illusion, Divination, and Necromancy schools on the Wizard List. See anything there that's really offensively impressive? No, you don't. Probably the most easy-to-use spells the Assassin gets are illusions (invisibility and all that). Yes, I know Divination has True Strike at level 1, but you can't actually combine that with a Death Attack. Necromancy really has more debuffs and, you know, raising dead and all that than it does really straight-up attack spells. Now, he has Wizard spell list. But he has Bard spells-per-day and spells-known. So the Spellcasting's helpful enough to be interesting, but not blow-people-out-of-the-water cheesy (Well, apart from Color Spray. That's a good spell to know at low levels).
The Assassin has a lot of reasons for its features. One big one is that classes and characters whose primary shticks is not that effective (direct damage to hit points, in this case), need a boost so they can compete with the people who are throwing around save-or-dies or save-or-suck spells. The other is F&K chose monsters as the balance point for classes--their classes are designed to be able to win about half the time against monsters and challenges of a CR equal to the character level, with a wide variety of monsters (big bruisers, spellcasters, gimmick monsters, etc.)
Does that explain things some? --Genowhirl 11:54, 4 March 2009 (MST)
Oh, wait. Level 10 has 12d6 in Death Attack damage. My mistake. That error, however, does take a d6 of damage out of the above figuring. --Genowhirl 13:51, 4 March 2009 (MST)

Wording - 4/5 --Jpaq25 10:58, 4 March 2009 (MST)

Rating removed since no reason was given. --Green Dragon 15:55, 4 March 2009 (MST)

Formatting - ~/5 --Jpaq25 10:58, 4 March 2009 (MST)

Rating removed since no reason was given. --Green Dragon 15:55, 4 March 2009 (MST)

Flavor - 4/5 --Jpaq25 10:58, 4 March 2009 (MST)

Rating removed since no reason was given. --Green Dragon 15:55, 4 March 2009 (MST)


Power - 4/5 I give this class a 4 out of 5 because it isn't hard to imagine ways to break this class with a couple prestige dips. Even so, it seems to be mostly good in its power progression. --Aarnott 10:47, 16 April 2009 (MDT)

I'm curious as to what these prestige dips are. This class was playtested more extensively than any other Tome class and while there were originally fears of it being overpowered, they didn't quite pan out in the playtesting. Surgo 10:53, 16 April 2009 (MDT)
Well an obvious choice is invisible blade -- though that really isn't "broken", just really good synergy. The feat prereqs for that are annoying though. Actually I can't really think of any PrC besides that. I was thinking something like this: pounce barbarian 1 + assassin 17 + frostrager 2 (for an extra unarmed attack and bab) + ring of blinking + haste = 104d6 damage every 2 rounds. Approx 70 damage per attack, which triggers massive damage. I'm sure something much better can be thought up, but I also suppose spellcasters can do stupider things. My rating will probably change. --Aarnott 11:22, 16 April 2009 (MDT)
Yeah. I give it 5/5 because it is actually well balanced. --Aarnott 15:42, 23 April 2009 (MDT)

Wording - 5/5 I give this class a 5 out of 5 because there are no major grammar/spelling errors. --Aarnott 10:47, 16 April 2009 (MDT)

Formatting - 4/5 I give this class a 4 out of 5 because it is missing preload stuff. --Aarnott 10:47, 16 April 2009 (MDT)

Flavor - 5/5 I give this class a 5 out of 5 because it fits a unique role, but also allows diversification. --Aarnott 10:47, 16 April 2009 (MDT)

Rating =[edit]

Power - 4/5 I give this class a 4 out of 5 because hiding in plain sight, death attack, and then full death attack just seems a little too much, especially when you could multiclass into a high-BAB class soon after and start gaining BAB quickly (and, as F&K pointed out in his "Races of War" 3.5e sourcebook, BAB at this point hardly makes a difference anyway. Your level seven fighter has a +7 BAB and your assassin has +5, which is only a 10% advantage that can be taken care of easily with something like Weapon Focus and Weapon Specialization on the assassin's part). I haven't playtested the class, but I will soon. And if I figure out that I was way the hell off, I'll change my rating. --For Valor 10:53, 1 July 2009 (MDT)

Wording - 5/5 I give this class a 5 out of 5 because it was writen (as far as I could tell) the way any class in the PHB would be written. Right at the beginning, "making an assassin" shouldn't be as colloquial as you've made it, but that's hardly important. --For Valor 10:53, 1 July 2009 (MDT)

Formatting - 5/5 I give this class a 5 out of 5 because the formatting is pretty much what I would expect out of the DMG, the tables are perfect (surprise) and there are plenty of links for all that I needed to reference (basically the stuff about spells). And epic progression doesn't have value in my opinion, anyway. --For Valor 10:53, 1 July 2009 (MDT)

Flavor - 2/5 I give this class a 3 out of 5 because there really is no flavor. Not only does the class play out exactly to the cliche ("im invisible wit my stabbbiez!!"), it offers no lore, no background, and doesn't bring about the personality of assassins in any way. There's no talk of assassins in the world or the assasin's main job in the party. A lot is left to be desired... well, at least you gave an intro. --For Valor 10:53, 1 July 2009 (MDT)

Yeah, the flavor is neutral because it's a morally neutral class. Like it said in the introduction, the Assassin is a set of skills and abilities, and those same skills can be used to kill for the highest bidder or be used to slay demons. Also, the "X in the world" thing is just...filler added by WoTC to fluff out their page counts halfway through 3.5's life cycle. It wasn't in the Tome class writeups in the original, and so far, I haven't gotten around to adding it (I've done so for the Conduit of the Lower Planes and the Fiend Brute). But if you want to know roles...well, the Assassin makes an excellent scout/opening striker, especially once he picks up his skill mastery. The addition of Divination, Necromancy, and Illusion magic adds some variables--especially the illusion. The Assassin's essentially a skillmonkey who can pack a punch every so often (well, a Rogue who's attending to business could probably outdamage him) and has some extra variables with the magic. And, for the Assassin, BAB *does* count. His Medium BAB makes his Death Attack a bit dicey, especially with the MAD he has going on (Intelligence, Dexterity, Strength, Con, Wisdom...Oh, yeah, and you can make talky Assassins who need Charisma, too. What stat does that lead out?); you have to remember, if the Assassin misses with his Death attack, he's out two rounds of work. --Genowhirl 12:19, 1 July 2009 (MDT)
Wow... smart. You just explained, like, everything I asked for. So why not just type it up on the article page? --For Valor 22:31, 1 July 2009 (MDT)
I'm erratically lazy. Also, I'd have to deal with the formatting, and format the information for the formatting. Which, with an ear infection right now, is not my idea of a good time. But, hey, since I've got the basic information right there, I guess I'll be tarting this page up next. I may go old-school and do a Tiefling Assassin... --Genowhirl 22:38, 1 July 2009 (MDT)
Wait, how is the assassin's main job in the party flavor? Seems like that would be dictated by what the class can actually do (as in, mechanics). Surgo 01:32, 2 July 2009 (MDT)
Well, it kinda is. I mean, the Assassin gets some decent abilities relating to remaining hidden and sneaking. Also, Death attack is a pile of damage. That suggests the assassin could scout around and see what's up. And when everyone else is ready, he can break out a Death Attack to start the surprise round. Later on, he can use some spells to remain hidden during combat and throw down a Death Attack every other round. Or, at least, make the attempt. Where it works or not is up to the dice. --Genowhirl 21:17, 2 July 2009 (MDT)
I'm pretty sure it's "cliche" because it's what an assassin does. --TK-Squared 23:50, 2 July 2009 (MDT)


Got a jump on Jota (of which I'm sorta proud). For clarity, I'll repeat the disclaimer I put it when I uploaded the picture.

All copyrights belong to Anima RPG. The image was created by Wen-M for Anima Studios. It was taken from his Deviantart page to be used as a page picture for an Assassin base class. If they don't want this up there, they may say only say the word and it will be removed and a substitute found. Check out both Anima RPG and Wen-M's gallery. Seriously. They're all kinds of awesome.

--Genowhirl 17:45, 4 July 2009 (MDT)


Power - 5/5 Having played on of these bady I can only comments it incredible balance. It damage ration is very similar to the rogue and it make up for it relative lack of skills and trapfinding ability with some spells. There no dead level and the class features are both interesting and useful. --The Zanni 01:44, 23 August 2009 (MDT)

Wording - 5/5 The wording is pretty much clear, I guess it can't really be improved beyond waht it is now, so a 5. --The Zanni 01:44, 23 August 2009 (MDT)

Flavor - 5/5 The class features are both original and interesting, the class may be generic (which it is required to be for a base class, at least most base classes) but it allow you to mold a character the way you want it, which IMO worth a 5. --The Zanni 01:44, 23 August 2009 (MDT)


One thing I've noticed, how come assassin classes (even core ones) always get spells? Not every assassin should, in fact, in some campaign settings (and Dhazriel's version), they don't. But then again, I never believed that paladins and rangers should get spells either. -- Danzig 23:07, 17 January 2010 (UTC)

Because otherwise they'd be rogues. -- Jota 00:00, 18 January 2010 (UTC)
Come on. That's the best answer you can give? The abilities of this class are not really the same thing as what a rogue has. Sure, a lot of the skills are similar, but the intent is not really the same thing. I never understood why assassins, rangers, and paladins should get spells. A hexblade, yes, because that fits in with that sort of class. But assassins? No, not really. Using a spell like heart ripper when you can easily just come in and kill with a weapon seems like overkill. -- Danzig 10:36, 18 January 2010 (UTC)
Because then they'd be fighters. You're mixing Profession (Assassin) with the actual class concept. -- Jota 18:44, 18 January 2010 (UTC)
No, Danzig does have a point. You could probably make a Full BAB Assassin who gets bonus feats rather than spells and it'd fill the concept just fine. But in a magical world...well, people can't ignore that magic is one of the most powerful tools around, and I'd expect at least some Assassins, who don't like giving a fair break if they can help it, to pick some up. --Genowhirl 02:31, 19 January 2010 (UTC)

Killer's Smile[edit]

Killer's great big smile. This is a nasty class, no mistake - it seems to be built with snipers in mind (death strike lacks the sneak attack/death attack range limitation) what with the whole sittin' on your butt lookin' pretty while spooling up your Bigger Nastier Sneak Attack. I don't like a couple class features (one in particular, and the whole "I put it up my sleeve, so no detect magic for you!" as an extraordinary ability then described as being supernatural in the text sits ill with me) However, it doesn't seem to be the spawn of wreck and ruin it could have been; I'm going to test it out myself in a game.

However, I really have to take exception to this one:

Killer’s Proof (Su): At 15th level, the Assassin learns to steal the souls of those he kills. If he is holding an onyx worth at least 100 GP when he kills an enemy, he may place their soul within the gem as if he has cast soul bind on them at the moment of their death.

Now, maybe I'm not reading this right. But it seems to posit that at 15 level I get a 9th level spell as an at-will supernatural ability, which is already to my mind a little... not good. But here I am getting it in a way that does not make sense. When casting soul bind, I need to use a focus, a black sapphire with a value not less than 1,000 gold pieces per hit die of the target creature. To bind a 17th level jerk that I strongly object to being resurrected (17th level being when a wizard could earliest have soul bind on the books), I need to sink 17,000 gold pieces into just one spell. One guy, and if I happen to be wrong (having researched whatever in-game handwaving explains how many hit dice my foe has) - that jerk is actually an 18 hit die beastie - my very very expensive focus shatters, leaving me out 17k and that butthead gets his resurrection to hassle me later. Now, that may not seem like a lot of money by 17th level, but it's certainly not 100 gold, which is what most 17th level adventurers spend on beer and certainly worth being able to deny resurrection to a dangerous enemy at any level. Beyond the pittance invested, beyond having a 9th level at-will, the mechanic doesn't make sense. If the gemstone isn't worth enough to hold a foe, it shatters. So somehow, the assassin has doped out a method to stuff a 1,000+ gold piece soul in a 100 gold piece box? This seems... broken somehow. Atypicaloracle 17:10, 11 September 2010 (MDT)

Broken? What does it break? A spell's level doesn't prove anything. Polar Ray shouldn't be 8th level. Entangle and Color Spray are level 1 spells that will regularly wipe out tougher enemies and, in fact, are better spells Fireball. And Soul Bind? You've killed the enemy already. Apart from keeping it from being resurrected, Soul Bind doesn't do anything apart from giving the DM the finger if he decided the person in question should have another go. It was written up in the [[Dungeonomicon (3.5e Sourcebook)|Dungeonomicon) which attempted to sort that out. The gem takes 100 GP because any soul can be stored in a gem of 100 GP. Off the top of my head: There's no reason for the gem to be anything special; it's just a container, and it also makes no sense that a soul will not deign to be contained in a gem unless it costs enough to include room service. Well, no reason because the D&D designers said "because we said so!". Which isn't an argument. To quote from the Dungeonomicon: "Souls: The souls of powerful creatures are trapped in gems and the trade in them is brisk on the outer planes, especially in the planar metropolis of Finality on Acheron. Once a soul is in a gem, the gem itself is of little or no value, but the soul goes for 100 gp times the square of the CR of the creature whose soul is trapped (see Tome of Fiends for more information on the use of souls)." So, yes, this was written with a few houserules in place. You can get go read the thing (it was placed on the wiki by me and someone else, though we didn't write it) and look it up. It should prove to be interesting. Also, about the Death Attack. I don't know if you noticed how the Death attack can only be used, at most, every other level? And if you miss, whoops, you've got a problem. Someone playing a rogue can get their sneak attack damage every round. The rogue actually comes out ahead, given how short combats are in D&D. --Genowhirl 20:10, 11 September 2010 (MDT)
One, I never said I had a problem with Death Attack. I said This is a nasty class, no mistake - it seems to be built with snipers in mind (death strike lacks the sneak attack/death attack range limitation) what with the whole sittin' on your butt lookin' pretty while spooling up your Bigger Nastier Sneak Attack. (Although there is a slight confusion there, since I'm referring to the DMG assassin's instant-kill-ability as having a limited range, not the Tome Assassin.) The attack is nastier per impact than a sneak attack, if you follow - I guess I should have said Bigger, Nastier, Slower Sneak Attack? My point was that I personally would not park my happy Assassin backside in melee range, because while a Rogue can glance at an enemy, shrug, and stick his rapier right in the guy's kidneys in a split-second, Assassins are a bit more artistic and spend 6 seconds doing nothing other than picking just the right spot for that knife blade to go in. Maybe it was where I mentioned that Death Attack has no range limit? Sorry, didn't mean that come across that way; I've always found the range limit on sneak attacks, sudden strikes, skirmish attacks and the Other Assassin's death attack to be incredibly stupid. If you're spending a full round doing nothing other than sizing up a target, you might as well be doing it while aiming a greatbow (my chosen exotic weapon for the class) from clear across the battlefield. So yes, I very obviously understand how death attack works, since I commented on the full round action in the only sentence in which I mentioned the ability at all. I presume that the death attack has all the other limitations of a sneak attack, like that plants don't have organs and vampires don't much care if you put a hole in their liver. However, obviously my argument regarding the spell doesn't hold water if we assume that I am using your house rules, which I'm not. It's not a big deal, and since my question - is this what this does? - was answered, it doesn't matter. I've already asked one of my players to build one of these guys and play it, and I'm really interested in seeing how it comes out. Given that any DM can alter a class however the hell they see fit, my not liking one or two class features isn't going to be a problem in my game. Frankly, the "oops it's up my sleeve!" trick is so minor that I'm not going to bother altering it - though I really do suggest changing the wording on Palm Blade so that it is a supernatural ability, however. Atypicaloracle
At early levels the Assassin's very likely better off using some of his spells. He's allowed Necromancy, Divination, and Illusion. Illusion, happily, contains Color Spray. He can also take Invisibility when gets level 2 spells to be able to set up his Death attack, but it does go something like Invisible --> Setup -->Strike. It's not a bad way to start off a fight, but he'd better go for the Mithril Chain Shirt +Awesome (good defense for the money, no ACP) for when he's in the middle of the enemies with it. The various image spells are good, both in and out of combat. He could probably use that exotic weapon proficiency on a greatbow or something if he wants to go ranged, or one of those weird finesseable meleee weapons the elves turn out. --Genowhirl 10:57, 13 September 2010 (MDT)
The tactics are basically identical to those used by a traditional assassin, only without the maddening provision that the class' major schtick only works once a combat. (Three rounds without the target knowing you're the enemy? Gee, glad that I'll spend most of my deadly attacks on surprising a guy in mid-handshake!) You conceal yourself, you line up the shot, you attack, you figure out someway to not be there immediately following. Spells like swift invisibility or a ring thereof could buy the assassin a vital measure of escape - attack, vanish, hide in plain sight, secure another shot. At higher levels, the ring of blinking could be this class' best friend (much as it is to many rogues) - 50% chance that any opponent who isn't packing ghost-touch weapons will whiff you when they counter-attack, and even better, blink denies your opponent their Dexterity modifier to armor class and doesn't break when you attack. My player has also expressed an interest in taking "New School" as an Exotic Method, for the express purpose of acquiring Transmutation magic. Sure, the assassin doesn't have a huge number of spells to spread around, but setting a slot here and there aside just in case might not be a terrible idea. Granted she's already giggling about using 50gp of mats to whip up a 4,500 gold piece dose of black lotus extract, but she's just over-excited about finally having an excuse to use poisons. Atypicaloracle 15:58, 13 September 2010 (MDT)
Death attack gets better once the Assassin actually has a BAB worth discussing. Especially on a full attack. And at those levels, they can afford some of their loot on stuff just like a Ring of Blinking. If you really want to see Assassin cheese, tell them to look at Rapid shot, since that full death attack also qualifies for actions it takes a full attack to use. Full attack, qualifies for the Full Death Attack, and ranged attacks don't suffer the miss chance from Blink. So, after a while, an Assassin will be able to drop one enemy with a death attack and a little luck. Problem is getting up there. Oh, and the transmutation school is made of crazy, especially with some of the spells out of books like the Spell Compendium. I seem there's one that lets you become a Nightwalker. --Genowhirl 20:21, 13 September 2010 (MDT)
Transmutation makes my head hurt in general - shapechange being possibly the most easy-to-break thing in all of D&D. Fortunately my players aren't munchkins -- I take a dim view of things like "I only took this class for one level to be moar kewl!!!!!!!1!!!" and they know it. I do like the "barrage assassin" notion though; I've wanted a way to create the Assassin class from Final Fantasy Tactics Advance, and they pack katanas (easily replaceable in D&D with any number of unpleasant, sleek, sophisticated bladed instruments) and greatbows (though my appreciation for them in D&D as an exotic weapon is more related to a fondness for launching massive arrows at people than related to the FFTA class) so it's easy to see the build coming together in my head. Barrages of arrows, some minor spellcasting, and of course, the occasional Extremely Deadly Lawndart (the oft-overlooked dart + some hideous injury poison like black lotus extract or death-blade + some awful weapon enchantment like seeking) launched from some rooftop (hmm... catapult spell?) just for novelty. Actually, I don't think the dart is in the SRD. What an odd thing to consider a proprietary weapon, WOTC. I did look at the character section of the Dungeonomicon, and I have to say I walked away with two classes that I liked -- the Jester and the Assassin. The Monk's writing turned me off immediately, and the Prestige Class That I Assume Is A Joke was also a pretty major groan-inducer. Atypicaloracle
Shapechange is actually, truly broken if you get it right; it wasn't errata'd as many times as the 4e skill challenge has been, but there's a lot of unsuccessful attempts to officially iron it out. And you can still bend the game in half and have it make no sense and auto-succeed on all the challenges the game throws at you. And, yes, there's a few joke PrCs in that section. Seeker of the Lost Wizard traditions, I'm told, has certain iconic spells function how they did back in 1e or 2e. So it's a wizard, who gets old-school style effect, and magic sword proficiency because that's what Gandalf got. The Ninja of Gax contains abilities that Gygax actually gave ninjas. Elothar is apparently an exercise in demonstrating how you tailor PrCs to a specific character and campaign (something the DMG advises DMs and players to do, but it doesn't come up that much). The Master of Snake Mountain pretty much lets you play Skeletor. The Dungeon Veteran is solid gold. But you didn't even bother to look at the Monk's mechanics because of...was it 'totally sweet', 'flip out' or the 'Whatever' thrown into the alignment.? Eesh. Take another look sometime. --Genowhirl 09:12, 15 September 2010 (MDT)
Fourth Edition's skill system makes my face hurt in general, so I'm not shocked that it's ridiculously easy to break. The monk's mechanics were... okay. Giving them the ability to do what you already do with IUS with any weapon you're holding is interesting, though I'm not going to lie, the overall presentation did completely detract from the class. It was written like somebody composed their idea for D&D: Street Fighter Edition on a notebook during lunch period and couldn't quite decide if they wanted to take the write up seriously or not. Some of it was very good - actually giving a name to the AC bonus was a nice touch, and actually whittling a monk down to Just Needing Two Stats was something I fully support. I've attempted occasionally to rewrite the monk; they have been the class I've had the strongest love/hate relationship with in D&D, and I've only found a few monk rewrites that were worth rolling (none of them were in Unearthed Arcana). 18:32, 15 September 2010 (MDT)
From what I've gathered, Keith (the K half) is the one who wrote the monk and the jester, for certain. The Monk is pretty much based on the wuxia movies (I don't know if you've seen them, but there's a whole action movie subgenre based on people who develop crazier and crazier skills by extreme practice and dedication to martial arts; check this for a look Most players are going to want to play a monk who achieves enlightenment and then uses it to kick someone's kidneys out of their ears. Sure, there's an irreverent tone in some of the flavor, but it fits in with the rest of the Dungeonomicon. The rest of the Tomes also go that route, with references to magic pants and stabbing people in the face and Evil (TM). You're allowed to treat it as seriously as you want. And just because you love something doesn't mean you can't poke fun at it. The Tomes make no pretense at being Serious Business. They're a bunch of houserules and analysis for a tabletop game. Most people play a game to have fun, so you really don't need to bend over backward to go all "In the Grim Darkness of the Continent of Ashalasia, the Samurai are a bastion against the forces of chaos". No flavor writeup will be consistent across all settings for all classes, so there's not much point in bothering.
And the 4e skill rules aren't broken, as much as they don't work. At all. Shapechange -does- work, but it works by letting you pick monsters with silly abilities and stack the benefits until you're immune to all damage, can get two full-round actions in a round, have nigh-invulnerable DR and have spell resistance it'd take the Word to blow down. --Genowhirl 20:47, 15 September 2010 (MDT)


Balance - 1/5 I give this class a 1 out of 5 because - completely over powered and unbalanced. -- 07:46, 14 April 2014 (MDT)

Wording - 4/5 I give this class a 4 out of 5 because - very well worded. -- 07:46, 14 April 2014 (MDT)

Formatting - 4/5 I give this class a 4 out of 5 because - Formated well. -- 07:46, 14 April 2014 (MDT)

Flavor - 1/5 I give this class a 1 out of 5 because - seems like a rip off of the already many good base assassin classes piled on top of each other for a number crunchers wet dream. . -- 07:46, 14 April 2014 (MDT)

Perhaps you could elaborate on why you think is overpowered? 1 out of 5 represents something gamebreakingly unbalanced. Marasmusine (talk) 07:54, 14 April 2014 (MDT)
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