In Dragon Magazine #315, a prestige class called
was introduced.. It comes with a class feature called "Ritual of the Dark Infiltrator", which is described thusly:
Ritual of the Dark Infiltrator (Su)
By undertaking a daylong ritual known only to the anarchomancers of the Revolutionary League, the anarchomancer can transform herself into a completely different character - one with a different race, class, and even abilities the anarchomancer does not possess herself. Using the Ritual of the Dark Infiltrator costs 1,000 gp and drains the anarchomancer of 1,000 XP. The ritual takes 24 hours, during which time the anarchomancer must be undisturbed.
When the ritual is finished, the anarchomancer chooses a new form, essentially creating a second character that she'll play instead of the anarchomancer. Calculate the anarchomancers base leadership score according to the rules for the Leadership feat; the second character is constructed as if it were a cohort appropriate for a character with that leadership score. Don't apply any of the reputation or leader modifiers (great renown, has a familiar, and so on). The second character retains the memories, motivations, and goals of the anarchomancer's previous life, but she can't cast spells or use racial abilities she doesn't possess anymore. Nothing short of a wish or miracle reveals the new character's former life as an anarchomancer. The anarchomancer gains new levels according to its character level as an anarchomancer, even if the second character is lower level.
As a full-round action, the anarchomancer can return to her original character, shedding the original body in a burst of eldritch power.
The part in bold is what got me thinking.
The character can attract a cohort of up to this level. Regardless of a character’s Leadership score, he can only recruit a cohort who is two or more levels lower than himself. The cohort should be equipped with gear appropriate for its level. A character can try to attract a cohort of a particular race, class, and alignment. The cohort’s alignment may not be opposed to the leader’s alignment on either the law-vs-chaos or good-vs-evil axis, and the leader takes a Leadership penalty if he recruits a cohort of an alignment different from his own.
"A cohort appropriate for a character with that leadership score" doesn't mention anything about the level of that character - which makes sense, since no character with Leadership is involved. So Leadership score is the only relevant stat, and that can be optimized for.
It is possible that the RAI is something like "a cohort as appropriate for a character of the Anarchomancer's character level and that leadership score", but that is not what the actual RAW says.
So, assume a build qualifying for Anarchomancer:
- Base Charisma of 18 (point-buy)
- Venerable Dragonwrought Kobold, for +3 Cha
- 10 levels of Sorcerer, for 5th level spells while being able to focus on Charisma
- 1 level of Anarchomancer, for the Ritual
- By Clvl 11, we have 2 ability score increases, spending both on Charisma gives us another +2 Cha
At this point, we're at Charisma 23/+6, let's assume another +1 from items pushing us to 24/+7, though this is very amenable to further optimization.
That gives us a Leadership score of 11 + 7, or 18, which according to the Leadership table would result in a Cohort at level 12.
So, assuming our Sorcerer 10/Anarchomancer 1 performs the Ritual of the Dark Infiltrator, what level would they create their new alter ego/"second character" as? 12, as their Leadership score indicates? 9, as the maximum level of a cohort they themselves could attract (if they had the Leadership feat)? Something else?