- Pale Master information on NWNWiki
Pale Masters are the true lords of necromancy and the undead. They possess excellent instant kill abilities.
- Legendary BAB: +9
- Languages: Palemasters can speak Magic and Necromantic. To speak it, use the command /l magic [message] to speak a single line in Magic, or /l necromantic [message] to speak a single line in Necromantic. Use !speak magic or !speak necromanticto speak Magic or Necromantic until you !speak another language or opt to !speak common.
- DC: Characters with 15 levels of palemaster get a +1 bonus to necromancy and illusion DCs. This bonus increases by another +1 at 30 levels of palemaster, and again at level 45, for a total maximum of +3 to DC. Legendary levels count as palemaster levels for the purpose of gaining these dc increases, if the character's control class is palemaster.
- CL: Palemasters calculate caster levels differently than they used to. They add a BASE caster level to their PM caster level for that spell school. The BASE caster level is their highest character level of wizard, sorceror, or bard, regardless of whether that class could cast the spell normally. The PM caster level is their PM level multiplied by either 1/3 (for non-necromancy or illusion spells) or 7/6 (for necromancy and illusion spells). THIS DOES NOT CHANGE SPELL PROGRESSIONS, ONLY THE CASTERLEVEL CALCULATION. Sorceror and PM levels still do not stack for the purposes of acquiring spells, for instance.
- Example: An 8 Bard / 22 PM casts a necromancy spell. His BASE caster level is 8, and his PM caster level is 7/6 * 22, or 25. His total caster level is 33 (8 BASE + 25 PM). If he was casting a non-necromantic, non-illusory spell, the BASE would still be 8, but the PM caster level would be 1/3*22, or 7, for a total caster level of 8 BASE + 7 PM = 15. The game engine always rounds down, so the 'bonus' PM caster levels are acquired every 6 levels of PM. Likewise, for non-necromantic, non-illusory spells, caster levels are acquired every three levels.
- So, what do these caster levels affect? They ALWAYS affect spell penetration, and USUALLY effect duration, damage, and other effects. The only reason they wouldn't effect these other variables is that some spells have their effects capped at a lower level. Horrid Wilting, for instances, maxes out at 30 caster levels with respect to damage. Vampiric Touch, on the other hand, does not.
- Palemasters do not gain their caster level benefit for the Ethereal Visage spell.
- At level 20, Palemasters get a boosted Death Armor, doing up to 45 +1d6 dmg at maximum caster level (does 1/caster level + 1d6), and lasting ten times as long.
- Bestow Curse and Power Word Kill are now treated as necromancy spell, for the purposes of calculating caster level and effects for palemasters.
- Lich Transformation: - At Pale Master 20, characters can find a set of items which will allow them to transform into a Lich, changing appearance and gaining a new ability, Lichsong. Note: This appearance change resets you to medium size allowing a previously small character (Gnome, Halfling, etc) to use a staff and a shield.
- The Lichsong ability has the Summon Creature II-IX spells on it. Wizard Pale Masters must have the identical spells memorized to use Lichsong (Sorcerer Pale Masters use only spell slots).
- The Summon Creature IX ability casts Curse Song at the caster's Pale Master level, including legendary levels. Summon Creature VIII subtracts 5 levels from this; VII 10 levels, and so on down to Summon Creature II at 35 levels below the caster's Pale Master level.
- See the Bard journal entries for details on Curse Song.
- Lifeblight: If a character gains 30 levels of Palemaster, not counting legendary levels, and has completed the lich transformation, he can gain this nefarious power. It is the equivalent of casting a vampiric touch on every enemy in the area of effect, and scales with legendary levels, as a necromantic spell, meaning that a 10 wizard 50 palemaster casts it at 68th level.
- Bone Skin: Pale Masters receive +2 base AC at level 1. For every 4 levels thereafter, they receive 2 more AC, as normal. If, however, they have at least 25 base Strength or Dexterity, AC above the base +2 is halved to 1 point of AC per 4 levels.
- Deathless Master Touch: At Pale Master 11, the DC on the Touch becomes 15 + (Pale Master level including LL - 10), reaching 55 at Pale Master 50. At Pale Master 30 (not including LL), the Touch can be used an unlimited number of times per day.
- Deathless Mastery: Instead of recieving full critical hit immunity at level 10, Pale Masters gain sneak attack immunity. At Pale Master 11 they gain 10% critical immunity which converts criticals into non-criticals 10% of the time. For each Pale Master level above 11 this increases another 10%, becoming full critical hit immunity at Pale Master 20.
- Pale Masters use a different version of Dragon Knight when casting from the feat.
Wizard-based Pale Masters cannot learn new spells when taking PM levels, but only when taking Wizard levels. Even without a splash class, this means that only 20 spells can be learned at level-up, while others need to be learned from scrolls. HG Enhanced spells and certain NWN standard spells cannot be (easily) scribed to scrolls, and should be learned at level-up. Some spells that are useful to Pale Masters that should be learned when taking Wizard levels:
- Vocalize (HG Enhanced)
- False Life (HG Enhanced)
- Rainbow Pattern (HG Enhanced)
- Vortex of Teeth (HG Enhanced)
- Wrack (HG Enhanced)
- Eyebite (HG Enhanced)
- Shades (lets you cast Fireball and Cone of Cold (giving access to Fire and Cold damage), Stoneskin and Wall of Fire as Illusion spells all at full PM casterlevel).
- Undeath to Death (can be scribed by a Theurge or Cleric with scribe scroll feat), scroll for this spell also drops in a level 40 Tag area
The HG enhanced level 9 Pale Master spell "Soul Bind" is granted for free by the Spell Pedestal in Docks of Ascension if the character has the level 9 spell Energy Drain, which can be scribed.
Buffs and Protection Spells
Pale masters have reduced caster levels for all spells outside of Necromancy and Illusion. This effects several of the spells commonly used for buffing and protection by Wizards.
- Endure Elements/Mage Armor/Shield/Expeditious Retreat - These spells cast at low caster levels and are not as effective for Pale Masters.
- Grease - Lower caster level reduces duration and save against falling down.
- Cat's Grace/Bull's Strength - These spells cast at low caster levels and are not as effective for Pale Masters.
- Death Armor Casts at full caster level.
- Invisibility Illusion so it's fine.
- Resist Elements Dependent on abjuration focus not caster level.
- Displacement Casts at full caster level.
- Protection from Elements Still provides 30/- protection but for much lower total HP.
- Elemental Shield Same protection but for a shorter duration.
- Improved Invisibility Casts at full caster level.
- Minor Globe of Invulnerability - These spells cast at low caster levels and are not as effective for Pale Masters.
- Shadow Conjuration Full caster level for mage armor and magic missile.
- Energy Buffer Casts at reduced caster level but still provides reasonable (but less) protection.
- Greater Shadow Conjuration (Minor Globe of Invulnerability) This spell option casts at full caster level.
- Lesser Mind Blank This spell is still useful.
- Lesser Spell Mantle Reduced protection but may be worth considering.
- Ethereal Visage/Greater Stoneskin/Globe of Invulnerability/Tenser's Transformation - These spells cast at low caster levels and are not as effective for Pale Masters.
- Shades(Stoneskin) The Stoneskin option for Shades casts Stoneskin at full caster level.
- Protection from Spells/Spell Mantle - Cast at low caster levels and are much less useful.
- Shadow Shield Casts at full caster level.
- Greater Sanctuary Still useful.
- Premonition - Cast at low caster levels and is much less useful.
- Greater Spell Mantle Reduced protection but may be worth considering.
Building a Pale Master
A Wizard based Pale Master should specialize in Necromancy or Illusion for more DC on his spells. Necromancy is most common because it has many more applicable spells. Two schools must be barred to choose a specialization. Several spells are issues for Pale Masters and should be considered when choosing barred schools:
- Vocalize is an enchantment spell
- Power Word: Kill is a divination spell, but is treated as a Necromancy spell for Pale Masters. Barring divination will not prevent Pale Masters from using this spell.
- Black blade of disaster is a Conjuration spell.
- Greater Sanctuary is a Transmutation spell.
The reduced caster level of Pale Master spells outside of Necromancy and Illusion limits options for elemental damage spells. However, the spells Shades, Greater Shadow Conjuration and Shadow Conjuration provide access to several elemental damage spells at full caster level.
Pale Master Types
Wizard based Pale Masters are generally built by taking 30 levels of Pale Master. For a "Pure" Pale Master, the remaining 10 levels are all Wizard Levels. Many Pale Masters choose to take a reduced number of Wizard Levels (usually 9) and add in a splash class. The main sources of differences between builds is the minor splash in cleric/rogue and whether or not they use robes or heavy armor.
With a rogue level Pale Masters can fulfill all rogue functions including Search, Disable Trap and Open Lock. This requires careful planning to ensure that the Open Lock skill can be raised to 127 and may require skill focus feats.
One disadvantage of this build is that unlike a sorcerer your spell slots and books are associated with gear and changing armor/amulet/gloves, etc. to maximise these skills can mean that you have to re-memorise spells when you re-equip caster gear.
Adding in a Cleric (or some other armor wearing class) facilitates using a Shield and Heavy Armor. This also requires the still spell feat line. This will give a slightly higher AC, significantly higher physical immunities and access to a couple of PM specific heavy armour items including the Plate of Anubis which changes FoD to an AoE effect.
- Sorcerer PM:
Sorcerer Pale Masters are not very popular, although the Staff of Forsaken Sorcery from Aboleths is designed to make these builds viable