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 Dear Genius
I have started an Eberron Campaign and am considering doing a warforged monk at some point. Since you are so good at optimizing monks, I want to know if you have any suggestions. --Sir Milo Teabag 14:39, 28 December 2007 (MST)
- Hmmm. I'm on vacation and have no books. What are the stats on a warforged scout? -- S1Q3T3 21:16, 28 December 2007 (MST)
- I'm not refering to the scout. The normal warforged, given the built-in armor and a battlefist, may very well be the best monk race in existance. +2 con, -2 Wisdom and Cha. This may be poor, but it can be overcome. A battlefist increases the size of the unarmed strike attack by 1, and allows enhancement bonuses to be applied to the warforged's unarmed strike. (They can already be applide to its body armor). The biggest weaknesses are the lack of psionics and the wisdom penalty. How far can a monk build go without psionics? —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Sir Milo Teabag (talk • contribs) 11:47, 30 December 2007 (MST). Please sign your posts!
- Oh, a long way. Who says warforged can't use psionics? It's not in their listing in MMIII. Anyway, you know what the case is for your campaign. So the challenge, then, is a conventional warforged, without psionics, and an optimal monk build. Let me think on it. -- S1Q3T3 19:08, 30 December 2007 (MST)
- One other thing I should clarify; I believe that while you can use the warforged's +2 armor bonus, the mithral or adamantine body options count as armor for the purpose of using monk abilities. Again, you know the rules where you are. -- S1Q3T3 19:11, 30 December 2007 (MST)
- Warforged Monk
- My thoughts on a warforged monk are as follows: after Monk 3, switch out of straight monk for either shintao monk or tattooed monk. You will thereby avoid all redundant abilities like unaging and immunity to poison; shintao and tattooed monks don't have either.
- I would probably go shintao, as in nine levels of shintao you pick up five martial arts bonus feats, starting at the 1st level, along with a lot of monk goodies. Basically, you have a fighter-type bonus feat progression while you're picking up str boosters, smite evil, invisibility, and gaze attacks. Pretty cool. But they're lawful good, and that's not to everyone's taste. Also, the tattoos are pretty powerful, and it's well worth going ten levels to get the full five.
- For multiclassing, I always recommend a level of Sohei, which nets you ki frenzy (all the better for the warforged, which doesn't get fatigued), a 1d10 hit die, and a bonus feat (Weapon Focus). Later on, I would recommend a level of Wu Jen to meet the arcane spell requirement of the blade dancer PrC; the Wu Jen also gets a +4 to initiative once per day and a bonus metamagic feat. I'd also recommend a level of weapon master (kensi) as this allows you to maximize your damage dice 1/day/level, which is a lot more significant for your 8d8 unarmed attack than a sword-wielders 1d10.
- For feats, I note that Beast Striker lets you stack your unarmed strike damage with your slam damage. I like that; I hate to see a natural attack go to waste just because your monk abilities are better. At BAB +5, you can take this feat, and have it both ways. Improved Natural Attack(MM) is vital, and if you accumulate Power Attack, Fists of Iron, Sunder, Eagle Claw Attack, and Ki Shout (plus 4 ranks in bluff) every 1d8 of your unarmed damage becomes 2d6. I always recommend Flying Kick (the OA version, not the wimpy CW version) and if you can also grab Roundabout Kick and Deflect Arrows, you get a +10 competence bonus to acrobatic skills (Balance, Jump, and Tumble.)
- I wouldn't go down the Stunning Fist path, because you are a damage-dealer, and your wisdom is low. I wouldn't go down the grapple/trip/disarm path because, again, you are a damage dealer, you aren't large, and you aren't overly strong. I would maximize your mobility, and buff your AC as you can. At the higher levels, when it becomes worth it, the TWF path is good. Get lots of those high-damage strikes. Cleave for the same reason. At early levels, I really like Reckless Offense (in the Expanded Psionics Handbook, but it's a general feat). You get +2 to hit in exchange for -4 to AC. Combine it with a charge and a flank attack on a flat-footed foe, and that is how you overcome the slow BAB progression of the monk.
- Oh, and special to the warforged: the Rapid Metabolism feat, also from the EPH, gives you standard healing + 2 times Con bonus per day, even if you do not rest. Good for a high-Con character that is difficult to heal magically. And I wouldn't be shy about dropping in a level of fighter or two if you can't pick up a feat you want. The BAB and hit points are nice too.
- Unfortunately, I do not own any of the books that these feats are in, except the MM I. Thanks for your effort, though. --Sir Milo Teabag 11:00, 1 January 2008 (MST)
- I understand; I thought I was pretty well covered for 3.5E, but I don't have Complete Warrior, which gets referenced on this site all the time. The one book that is critical for monk characters is Oriental Adventures. Hands down. It has two monk prestige classes that are better than the standard progression and accessible after the third level (and a third monk PrC that is just so-so). It has great martial arts feats, and style benefits you get automatically once you collect certain feats. There are many great multiclassing options for the monk in there (starting with the rule that monks can multiclass freely); Shibia protector (Wis bonus stacks with Str for to hit and damage), Blade Dancer, Sohei, Wu Jen, etc. Cool races, too. And it's a beautifully made book with a lot of flavor, not just useful rules. I highly recommend it. -- S1Q3T3 18:26, 1 January 2008 (MST)