Is Dry lich worth a 10 level sink into walker in the waste?

Im talking to my gm discussing if it's worth it and in my opinion it's worth it if you get it for free that Rai suggests but not if it's Raw with a +5 La

So is it worth to sink 10 levels into walker in the waste if you get it for free/+5 la?

Also is there anything else that supports it being free except Dragon Disiple?


1 Answer 1


Dry lich is a very powerful template, that you cannot get any other way. Is it worth 10 levels? You would have to define “worth.” There are more powerful prestige classes that you could take instead (incantatrix, initiate of the sevenfold veil, aboleth mage, illithid savant). Taking dry lich means not taking one of those, and if that’s what we’re comparing walker in the waste against, then the answer is “no.”

On the other hand, walker in the waste is relatively easy to enter; it is definitely worth burning a feat on Heat Endurance (particularly when you consider there are half-decent races that get it as a bonus feat).

As for LA, RAW is not nearly as clear as you suggest. Prior to the walker in the waste, it was always presumed that prestige classes that grant templates give them for “free.” Clearly, dragon disciple (the original such prestige class) is not remotely worth it otherwise, since you already have many of the features of the template. The strangeness of walker in the waste’s LA despite being only available through the prestige class is the only reason anyone would even consider the possibility that it’s not free. Ultimately, nothing in the game defines precisely what it means for a prestige class to give you a template. Your DM has to make a call on that, but he should do so based on what he thinks is best for the game, not what he believes to be RAW—he should do that in general (though I would argue that there is some inherent value in sticking to RAW when possible, this value is definitely not worth making a ruling that makes everyone at the table unhappy), but particularly in a case like this when RAW is so unclear.

Also, for the record, “RAI” is absolutely not any clearer. The only pieces of data that we have are that they printed a prestige class that gives a template that cannot be gained any other way, and then gave that template an LA. What they intended that combination to mean is just not at all clear. They very well may have meant for you to take that LA.

As for whether or not the class is “worth it” with that LA, that depends: do you have a decent sense of when your last level will be? Time your final level of walker in the waste to land on it. LA does nothing immediately—it only affects when your next level-up is. Dry lich is almost-certainly not worth delaying any level as much as the template’s LA +4 would have you do, but even if you’re forced to take it, you can still (kind of) take advantage.

Depending on how much this forces you to delay that last level of walker in the waste, this may make the entire proposition a waste of time. That is a purely personal preference that no one on this site could answer for you.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Yeah i know it's a personal preference im just trying to get a fresh view on it, we are doing a fairly highpower campaign so i think it would fit but as you said it can be quite strong. \$\endgroup\$
    – Avenger
    Nov 22, 2016 at 5:40

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