Tuesday, August 7, 2018

Spheres of Power & Might: Converting Geralt of Rivia

In hearing that the Witcher franchise was going to get a tabletop release in early August, I was inspired to emulate its hero using the Spheres of Power system. Although the Witcher has had an influence on Pathfinder's notable Alchemist class, said archetype didn't really do justice to the White Wolf. But seeing as how Spheres of Might has a dedicated Alchemy sphere which can combine with just about every practitioner class, I couldn't think of a better sourcebook to use for conversion!

Important Note: this stat block is based off of Geralt during the events of the Witcher 3. Most of his talents reflect a broad range of potential abilities from his skill trees rather than a "specialized" build.

Classes: Given the scope of his talents, Geralt is going to be a Conscript to take advantage of the bonus feats and talents. 8 levels is enough to cover the bases minus a few feats for Extra Combat Talent. For his magical powers Geralt will have 5 levels in Incanter, with no specializations so as to keep enough bonus feats for Extra Magical Talent.

Fighting Style: Geralt is first and foremost a swordsman. He carries a pair of swords, one steel and the other silver depending on whether he is fighting men or monsters. He typically fights one-handed to make use of signs, throwing bombs, or using a crossbow to shoot at flying enemies. Additionally, Geralt makes liberal use of alchemical gear to enhance his personal abilities. Like many witchers he is very tool-based, able to quickly draw a wide variety of equipment for the job at hand.

For Martial Tradition, Geralt is a Dedicated Duelist. This Equipment talent makes him proficient with all manner of swords, and most witcher fighting styles are renowned for their speed and grace. For the variable choices we'll have Geralt gain the Duelist Sphere and Gauntlet Shield. Geralt of Rivia typically wears armor, so the Unarmored Training option choice would go to waste.

For Spheres and Talents, Geralt is very much a warrior who is at his best when he gathers information about the opposition ahead of time. He will specialize in the Alchemy and Dueling Spheres mostly, with some token talents in Scout, Equipment, Berserker, and Fencing.

For Alchemy, we'll first focus on Geralt's Bombs. Cluster Toss represents his ability to rapidly throw several at once, while Improved Alchemist Fire corresponds to Dancing Star. Grapeshot is analogous to Improved Fuse Grenade, while Samum bombs are closest to Improved Flash Powder. Unfortunately there are no talents to replicate Devil's Puffballs poison gas, the Dimeritium Bomb's antimagic effects, Moon Dust's anti-transformation capabilities, or Dragon's Dream fire-based triggered explosive.

Regarding personal use potions and decoctions, Salve covers the iconic swallow and various other vitality regenerating potions. But the sheer scope of potions in the Witcher games are so diverse that they cannot be covered in full in Spheres of Might. Performance Enhancer is a broad-range buff which can cover a lot of decoctions.

For poisons, Painful Venom represents Geralt's ability to do additional damage with certain oils, while Specialized Venom allows him to poison creature types normally immune to the condition (constructs, elementals, plants, and undead cover the majority of such beings in the Witcher universe).

Geralt's Berserker sphere with Shieldbreaker represents the Rend ability of his Strong Attack where he can ignore an enemy's defenses, while the Duelist's Hurricane Strike and Open Vein reflect the Crippling Strikes and Whirl abilities of his Fast Attacks. For the Equipment sphere, Thrower's Reflexes reflects the famed witcher ability to parry an arrow even at close range. Fencing's Parry and Riposte talent reflects Geralt's ability to counter-attack, while Ankle Strike is taken so that Geralt can take Aerial Trip without the 2 sub-par feat prerequisites. Finally, the Scout sphere's Target Weakness is tailor-made for Geralt's monster-hunting capabilities, while Track the Scene reflects his ability to follow tracks and recollect info at the scene of a crime.

Total Combat Talents: 4 from the Dedicated Duelist Martial Tradition (Duelist Training, Finesse Fighting, Gauntlet Shield for Equipment, Duelist base sphere), 12 combat talents from the Conscript class, 8 from the Extra Combat talent feat (5 of which are bonus feats gained from levels in Conscript).

Magic Style: Geralt of Rivia, and by extent all witchers, specialize in signs. Signs are simple magical effects which are quickly employed via a hand gesture. They are minor spells in the world of the books and video games, meant to be an auxiliary tactic than one most witchers primarily rely upon in their profession.

For Magical Tradition, Geralt's signs are obvious, even the mind-affecting Axii, so Magical Signs is appropriate. Furthermore, the requirement of gestures points to 1 level of Somatic Casting. Regarding Sphere-specific Drawbacks, the offensive Aard and Igni are rather short-range and do not manifest as single-target rays, so Destructive Touch and Shape Focus reducing them to short-range cones or lines is ideal. The Sculpt Blast talent makes it so that the cone and line area of effects originate from Geralt in keeping with this, which will be our bonus talent from Shape Focus. For Protection, Circle of Symbols goes well with the Yrden sign, so we can use that bonus talent to snag ourselves the ever-appropriate Glyph.

We'll call this magical tradition Witcher Signs, and its casting ability modifier will be Intelligence. For the two general drawbacks, Geralt will gain 1 bonus spell point plus 1 per 3 levels in casting classes.

For Spheres and Talents, The Aard and Igni signs fall into the Destruction Sphere. Force Blast for Aard and Fire Blast for Igni respectively. Sculpt Blast allows Geralt to shape his blasts into cones or lines, being able to effect multiple opponents.

The Axii sign is quite clearly Mind, and since it can effect monsters and multiple people at once in battle the Expanded Charm and Group Charm abilities are most appropriate. Confusion represents Axii's ability to turn allies against each other, while Enthrall represents its ability to get people to agree with Geralt's line of thinking.

The Quen sign is a bit special. As outright damage immunity to all sources is overpowered in Pathfinder, the Obstruction Aegis is the closest equivalent. Painful Aegis represents an advanced feature where an enemy striking Geralt suffers damage in return.

Finally, the Yrden sign is first and foremost a trap. As it must be laid down on the ground to trigger, it uses the effects of several spheres. First, Gylph from Protection gives it its AoE and trigger conditions. The base damage of the Destruction sphere grants it its damage, while the base slow feature of the Time sphere represents Yrden's ability to halve monster movements. Improved Slow and Time Freeze make the sign's effects more debilitating.

Total Magic Talents: 10 from levels in Incanter class, 3 bonus ones from Sphere-specific drawbacks, 3 from Extra Magical Talent feat (3 of which are bonus feats from Incanter class)

Geralt of Rivia
Male Witcher* Conscript 8/Incanter 5
N Medium Humanoid (Augmented Human)
Init +2; Senses Perception +16, Darkvision 60 feet
AC 23, touch 15, flat-footed 19 [+7 armor, +2 dexterity, +3 deflection, +1 shield]
hp 118
Fort +13 (+16 vs poison) Ref +12 Will +9 (+10/+9/+6 without Raven's Armor)
Immunities disease
Speed 30 ft.
Melee Aerondight +17 (1d8+6 plus 1d6 fire plus 3 bleed, 1d10 extra fire on critical, 19-20/x2)
One-handed Power Attack Aerondight +14 (1d8+12 plus 1d6 fire plus 3 bleed, 1d10 extra fire on critical, 19-20/x2)
Ard'aenye +17 (1d8+7 plus 3 bleed, 17-20/x2)
One-handed Power Attack Ard'aenye +14 (1d8+13 plus 3 bleed, 17-20/x2)
Ranged Masterwork Light Crossbow +13 (1d8 plus 3 bleed, 19-20/x2)
Ranged Aard/Igni Sign (Force/Fire Blast) 60 foot cone or 30 foot line, Reflex DC 16 (7d6 force/fire damage plus prone or on fire respectively if save fails)
Ranged Dancing Star (Improved Alchemist Fire) +12 ranged touch (20 foot increment, 7d6 fire, half amount for enemies 5 feet away, 7 10 feet away, catch on fire within 5 feet)
Ranged Samum (Improved Flash Powder) +12 ranged touch (20 foot increment, targets within 10 foot radius blind for 1 round on a failed save)
Ranged Grapeshot (Improved Fuse Grenade) +12 ranged touch (within 60 feet, explodes in 1d3 rounds for 6d6 bludgeoning and 6d6 fire in 20 foot radius)
Ranged Cluster Toss for Dancing Star/Samum/Grapeshot +10/+8 for throwing two or three additional bombs of any kind as part of same action (enemies get +2/+4 on relevant saving throws)
Two-handed: Geralt of Rivia's damage with Aerondight is 1d8+8, 1d8+9 with Ard'aenye. If Geralt chooses to use the Power Attack feat, he can add +9 damage.
Brutal Strike: By expending his martial focus, Geralt may deal an additional 20 points of damage when using his Brutal Strike berserker ability
Fatal Thrust 3d6 bonus precision damage vs an opponent which is flat-footed, lost its Dex bonus to AC, or is being flanked by Geralt
Open Vein: By expending his martial focus as an immediate action, Geralt may deal 3d4 bonus bleed damage to an enemy
Performance Enhancer: Geralt gains +2 to hit and to damage if he has +4 to Strength. If he is two-handing Aerondight or Ard'aenye, he deals 1d8+11 or 1d8+12 damage respectively. Power Attack adds +9 damage as usual.
Caster Level +5; MSB 5; MSD 16; Concentration +11
Tradition Witcher Signs; CAM INT DC 16
Spell Points 10
Spheres Destruction (Fire Blast, Force Blast, Sculpt Blast), Mind (Confusion, Enthrall, Expanded Charm, Group Charm), Protection (Glyph, Obstruction, Painful Aegis), Time (Improved Slow, Time Freeze)
Drawbacks Circle of Symbols (Sphere Specific), Destructive Touch (Sphere Specific), Magical Signs, Shape Focus (Sphere Specific), Somatic Casting (1)
Martial Tradition Dedicated Duelist; PAM INT, DC 18
Talents Alchemy (Cluster Toss, Improved Alchemist Fire, Improved Flash Powder, Improved Fuse Grenade, Painful Venom, Performance Enhancer, Salve, Specialized Venom [Construct, Elemental, Plant, Undead]), Berserker (Shieldbreaker), Duelist (Hurricane Strike, Open Vein), Equipment (Gauntlet Shield, Finesse Fighting, Thrower's Reflexes), Fencing (Ankle Strike, Parry and Riposte) Scout (Target Weakness, Track the Scene)
Str 18, Dex 15, Con 16, Int 16, Wis 10, Cha 10
Base Atk +10; CMB +14; CMD 26
Feats Aerial Trip, Extra Combat Talent x8 (B), Extra Magical Talent x3 (B), Muscular Reflexes, Power Attack, Quick Draw
Skills (94 points): Acrobatics** 13 (+18), Climb 5 (+12), Craft (Alchemy) 13*** (+19/+21 to craft), Bluff 13*** (+16), Handle Animal 7 (+10), Intimidate** 10 (+16), Knowledge (Arcana, History, Local, Nature) 2 (+8), Perception 13 (+16), Sense Motive** 13 (+16), Spellcraft 7 (+13), Stealth 13*** (+18), Survival 13 (+16, +22 to follow tracks), Swim 5 (+12)
**Bonus class skill for Conscript
***Bonus skill points gained from Spheres
Traits Alchemical Adept, Charming
Languages Common, Dwarven, Elven, Gnome, Sylvan
SQ darkvision 60 feet, dulled emotions
Gear 1,750 GP; Aerondight (+3 flaming burst silver longsword), Alchemy Crafting Kit, Ard'aenye (+3 keen longsword), gauntlet, masterwork light crossbow, Raven's Armor (acts as cloak of resistance +3 and +4 poison-resistant stanching studded leather), Roach (heavy horse), Witcher's Medallion (acts as Ring of Protection +3 and Lantern of Auras)
Favored Class Conscript +7 HP

Special Attacks/Abilities

Gwnbleidd, the White Wolf, the Butcher of Blaviken...Geralt goes by many names, but all tales agree on his peerless fighting ability!

This is but a sampling of the many things Geralt of Rivia can do in the Spheres of Power/Might System.

With his feats, Geralt can...

1.) make a trip attack against a flying creature; if successful, the creature gains the entangled condition and begins to fall at a rate of 100 feet per round until it regains balance on a Fly check or hits the ground. In keeping with the Witcher 3, allow Geralt to do this with a crossbow or ranged weapon.

2.) Make up to 5 attacks of opportunity per round, or 7 if under the effects of his Performative Enhancer talent.

3.) Do bonus damage with Power Attack.

With his Spheres of Might Talents, Geralt can...

1.) apply poison to his weapon as a move action, which fatigues the target for 1 minute and deals 6 bonus points of damage on a failed Fortitude save. Geralt's poisons can affect enemies of the construct, elemental, plant, and undead types.

2.) Do damage with an explosive bomb (Improved Alchemist Fire/Improved Fuse Grenade), or blind enemies instead (Improved Flash Powder)

3.) Increase his choice of Strength, Dexterity, or Constitution by +4 with a -2 to a corresponding ability score (STR/DEX/CON to INT/WIS/CHA) for 1 minute.

4.) Create a poultice which can heal 6d8+3 damage, and any single target may only gain the benefits up to 9 times per day.

5.) Make an additional attack against all enemies within reach as an immediate action at a -2 penalty if he dealt bleed damage to a creature and drew his weapon in the same round; Geralt rolls once and compares the results to each individual enemy AC, and does half the damage he dealt against the original target.

6.) Deal 3 points of bleed damage whenever he successfully attacks or disarms a creature, and never provokes attacks of opportunity when attempting combat maneuvers against creatures taking bleed damage.

7.) Deal 3d6 points of bonus precision damage against a target within 30 feet that is flat-footed, that has lost its Dexterity bonus to AC, or Geralt is flanking. Geralt may then attempt a trip combat maneuver as a free action without provoking an attack of opportunity.

8.) May perform a brutal strike as a special attack action, imposing the battered condition on a target until the end of Geralt's next turn. If Geralt applies brutal strike against a piece of armor, shield or manufactured weapon, he ignores 10 points of the item's hardness, and any excess damage dealt is transferred to the wielder if the item is destroyed. Geralt rolls the combat maneuver check twice and takes the better result if the target wielder is battered.

9.) As a free action, take a -2 penalty to Armor Class in exchange for 13 temporary hit points until the start of Geralt's next turn.

By expanding martial focus, Geralt can...

Use his Cluster Toss talent to use up to three alchemical items that can normally be used as a standard action as part of the same standard action.

Use his Open Vein talent as an immediate action to deal +3d4 bleed damage.

Use his Thrower's Reflexes to catch a ranged weapon which would normally hit him, provided he is aware of the attack and has at least one hand free (reflavor as parrying away with a sword strike).

Use his Parry and Riposte talent to use an attack of opportunity against a creature which made a melee attack against him, -2 for each size category larger the attacking creature is. If Geralt gets a higher result than the enemy's attack roll, he dodges the attack and 1.) either regains his martial focus or 2.) makes an immediate single melee attack in response.

Use this Target Weakness talent as a free action.

Add 20 points of damage to his Brutal Strike.

By expending 1 spell point, Geralt can...

Increase the damage dealt with a destructive blast by 5 bonus damage die.

Use his Sculpt Blast talent.

Use the Greater Charm ability of his Axii (Mind) talents, or use Group Charm to affect 2 additional creatures with the same casting.

Use Time Freeze as part of his Yrden (Protection-Glyph) sign to freeze all activity within a 15 foot burst for one round.

Use the Glyph talent of the Protection Sphere; aka setting down a Yrden sign.

Bonus Material

Witcher Race: Witchers are humans who underwent special training and alchemical augmentations to enhance their physical capabilities. In addition to their enhanced strength and stamina, witchers are also known to be immune to infectious diseases, able to see in poor lighting and darkness, and have far longer lifespans than typical humans.

Standard Racial Traits:
Ability Score Racial Traits: Witchers gain +2 to Strength and Constitution, but -2 to Charisma. Witchers are strong, but lose many of their emotional drives after undergoing the Trial of Grasses.
Size: Witchers are Medium creatures.
Base Speed: Witchers have a base speed of 30 feet.
Languages: Witchers begin play speaking the native tongue they grew up with, usually Common.

Defensive Racial Traits:
Immunity: Witchers are immune to all diseases, magical and non-magical.
Dulled Emotions: Witchers gain a +4 racial bonus on saving throws against fear-based effects, and anyone attempting use the Intimidate skill on a Witcher must roll twice and use the worse result.

Senses Racial Traits:
Darkvision: Witchers can see in the dark up to 60 feet.

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