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Demons and Associated Class Levels

So, a while ago I had my party run into a fight with a Glabrezu. The demon killed the NPC they were trying to escort, taunted them for their failing and teleported away. Now, I'm thinking that this demon is going to make a return appearance later on in the campaign. But I want him to have a bit more heft to him. While I could just tack on more HD, that seems ... boring.

What do you feel would be an appropriate class for a Glabrezu? Cleric levels? Glabrezus attempt to deceive and trick their opponents into ruin, preying on their greed. Would something like bard or rogue be more appropriate?

Thanks!
 

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Celebrim

Legend
What do you feel would be an appropriate class for a Glabrezu? Cleric levels? Glabrezus attempt to deceive and trick their opponents into ruin, preying on their greed. Would something like bard or rogue be more appropriate?

Outsider HD is a fairly powerful class, full BAB, 8 skill points per 'level', good saves. I wouldn't completely discount it as 'boring', and most of the classes you would add would tend to offer less bang for the buck.

I can think of several interesting approaches using my homebrew rules - champion, hunter, fanatic, sorcerer - but they are a lot less interesting in RAW. The thing about Bard or Rogue is that they are usually really weak when applied to an NPC, especially a BBEG. You can just some use out of them as a horde of rogue mooks, or bard mastermind type with a horde of mooks he's buffing, but both classes are support classes. You could go Sorcerer, but the sort of spell-abilities that a sorcerer gets would be pretty trivial additional powers until quite high level compared to the Glabrezu's natural attacks and abilities - still, a few levels of sorcerer with the right spells wouldn't go astray. Barbarian is always pretty good for BBEG, and you probably couldn't go wrong with fighter either but both mean you are planning to use the BBEG mostly as a combat brute. If you are big into 3.5, then I'd probably go with Factotum if you were wanting to play up this creature as cunning and treacherous - not that there is a lot of support for that.
 

Loonook

First Post
Glabs have the following native abilities of note:

-Wish (which is granted in a monkey's paw way)
-Veil (self)
-Reverse Gravity
-Mirror Image
-PW: Stun
-Summon of Glabs/Vrocks

Lots of traps and trickery can be done with those skills.

Gestalt the Outsider and another class, or force them into an appropriate PrC or other option.

Honestly? The best options are to set up unique abilities for your set piece NPCs. At higher levels banishment and other effects may come into play with well prepared casters. Use your available tools to puzzle what would be a good challenge first.

You could grant the creature a cohort to assist with their work to add an additional body in the 'boss fight'. Or bump up his Mirror Image to 1d4 Simulacrum, Lesser 1/day, allowing him to hide himself with fleshy half selves.

Suggestions for a cohort include:

A Paladin who begged the favor of a priest to return her beloved to life. The 'priest' granted her wish, but the creature that came back came back wrong.

A down-on-his-luck Rogue begged the gods for fingers that charm silver. Now anyone he touches turns to silver. The Rogue serves as the Glab's chief assassin, leaving behind a pile of sulfurous silver pieces as the sign of his passing.

A bard seeking a voice to charm patrons gains the gift to command others but it is taken literally. The Glab has bound the bard to him to prevent banishment, and the bard wear's a scold's mask to prevent his words from causing terrible effects. He's gone quite mad over time of not using his gifts....

Glabs also have high UMD so scrolls and other effects could be used. Throw in possible rituals and other effects and you can make a really interesting villain for an arc later down the road.
 

A follow up question, if I crank up the HD on the Glabrezu, do the caster level of its spell like abilities and its spell resistance scale at all? How dangerous would it be to say that they do?

Also, the Glabrezu is stuck on the prime material. Powerful magics pulled him and his demonic horde out of the abyss and stranded him there. Until he completes his mission he cannot return to the abyss. Banishment and Dismissal do not work on him. (Yay, plot armor!)
 

Celebrim

Legend
A follow up question, if I crank up the HD on the Glabrezu, do the caster level of its spell like abilities and its spell resistance scale at all? How dangerous would it be to say that they do?

I'm not sure what the official answer is, but when buffing a monster to create a mini-boss or BBEG, I always do. So long as you are thoughtful about it, I don't think it's particularly dangerous to say that say SR goes up by +1 per 2HD increase or that caster level increases proportionately to the increase in HD. Most spells in 3e are level capped anyway, so the main thing increased caster level gets you is resistance to counter-spells and ability to overcome SR. At caster level 14, you are already over the level cap of most of the scalable spells, so (for example) buffing to 18HD and caster level 21 is mostly about the change in HD - not the increased caster level.

What I've typically done since the 1e era is also increase leaders access to spell like abilities. So for example, for a Glabrezu lord, depending on the capabilities I expected the party have, I'd probably buff to Power Word (Stun) - 3/day, and Wish 3/month, while buffing summoning ability to 6d10 dretch or 1d3 vrock with 100% chance, or one Glabrezu 40% chance.

As for 'plot armor', I hate plot armor. If you want to give something plot armor, give a concrete in game reason why he's not banishable rather than hand wave it away. For example, there could be some potent minor artifact holding him in place and preventing him and his army from being banished, but then if the artifact were located and destroyed, he would be subject to banishment. That opens up plot rather than closes it down.
 
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Eltab

Lord of the Hidden Layer
For example, there could be some potent minor artifact holding him in place and preventing him and his army from being banished, but then if the artifact were located and destroyed, he would be subject to banishment.
If you are in FR, this glabrezu might be a servant of Eltab and tied to a particular demoncyst, the same way his master is tied to the Citadel of Conjurors.
The PCs could have to lure him into the demoncyst - where he gets stronger because he is in his natural (abyssal?) element - and fight him there to kill him dead.
 

Ath-kethin

Elder Thing
I'd go with either bard or paladin levels. Those to me are the most opposite an idea of what a demon would do, and would therefore come as the biggest surprise to your players. They also open up the most role-playing opportunities as you work out WHY the demon followed that path.

Some kind of academic could be interesting too. Maybe an abjurer or diviner? With the glabrezu's intelligence, it would make a powerful wizard. And with it's physical ability, it makes a fearsome gish.
 

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