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Thraskir Skimper
Learned Scribe

195 Posts

Posted - 27 Aug 2018 :  03:25:48  Show Profile Send Thraskir Skimper a Private Message  Reply with Quote  Delete Topic
Do you construct Golems, what type?

Do you take them adventuring or keep them as base guards?

Are your Golems Constructs or Shape Changed Wizards.

Thay Red

Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
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Posted - 27 Aug 2018 :  05:11:10  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I've never even heard of wizards shape-changing into golems. I can't say that I see a point to that.

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Lord Karsus
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Posted - 27 Aug 2018 :  06:23:46  Show Profile  Send Lord Karsus an AOL message Send Lord Karsus a Private Message  Reply with Quote
-I mean, I guess they could temporarily to get the benefits that taking on that form might have, but yeah, in terms of it being a permanent transformation, kind of seems like a downgrade in terms of life quality.

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George Krashos
Master of Realmslore

Australia
5307 Posts

Posted - 27 Aug 2018 :  07:55:32  Show Profile Send George Krashos a Private Message  Reply with Quote
But there are wizards in the Realms who have lived "in" golems. That sounds kind of cool.

-- George Krashos

"Because only we, contrary to the barbarians, never count the enemy in battle." -- Aeschylus
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LordofBones
Senior Scribe

833 Posts

Posted - 27 Aug 2018 :  08:24:55  Show Profile Send LordofBones a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

I've never even heard of wizards shape-changing into golems. I can't say that I see a point to that.



3.5e shapechange allows you to take on any form of any creature under 25 HD. Of course, the original post does beg the question of how you'd keep 17th level wizards in your service as mere guards.
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
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Posted - 27 Aug 2018 :  10:07:20  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by LordofBones

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

I've never even heard of wizards shape-changing into golems. I can't say that I see a point to that.



3.5e shapechange allows you to take on any form of any creature under 25 HD. Of course, the original post does beg the question of how you'd keep 17th level wizards in your service as mere guards.



I wasn't contesting that it was doable -- I was just wondering why someone would do that. A wizard with that capability would be better off creating a golem, I think, and setting up all sorts of magical traps.

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Edited by - Wooly Rupert on 27 Aug 2018 10:08:12
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TBeholder
Master of Realmslore

1743 Posts

Posted - 27 Aug 2018 :  10:49:53  Show Profile Send TBeholder a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

I've never even heard of wizards shape-changing into golems. I can't say that I see a point to that.

Even if that's possible... I don't see why shapechanging.
A golem is more or less variant magic jar (usually intended for an earth elemental). And we know helmed horrors are "piloted" by spirits of mortal people stuck there, sometimes even reversibly so.
So, possessing a golem is very much on the table.
IIRC one of the Magisters did this.
Dwalimar Omen did something similar, but transferred another (Minder).
Also, FRwiki mentions Sogi-nora from Storm Riders. Stone golems from the Hordelands, made by wu jen. Not only they act sentient, they perform martial arts moves, thus we can reasonably assume the "pilot" in this version is not an earth elemental, but rather a compatriot of the creator.

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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
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Posted - 27 Aug 2018 :  15:40:47  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I should think that a wizard of that level, tasked with guarding something, would be inclined to make a golem long before thinking of becoming one.

But unless specifically directed to do so, a golem likely wouldn't be the first choice - various summoned critters, undead, and/or planar entities (including elementals) would be more obvious choices, and/or all sorts of warding spells.

And, as pointed out, that's all ignoring the issue of keeping a 17th level wizard in a mere grunt position.

I'm not really up on golem stats or construction, but I'm recalling from prior editions that it's neither cheap nor quick, and I'm thinking that golems wouldn't be the most viable options for adventuring canon fodder. If you can keep a 17th level wizard on retainer and pay for his spellcasting and the materials for a golem, you could prolly hire at least a couple 10th level fighters, give them magic shields and swords, and still save money.

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LordofBones
Senior Scribe

833 Posts

Posted - 27 Aug 2018 :  18:38:24  Show Profile Send LordofBones a Private Message  Reply with Quote
To be fair, the shadesteel golem is a pretty decent choice for shapechanging, considering the spell immunity and perfect flight. The prismatic golem is arguably better.
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Ayrik
Great Reader

Canada
6697 Posts

Posted - 27 Aug 2018 :  20:21:44  Show Profile Send Ayrik a Private Message  Reply with Quote
The cost of constructing a decent golem in AD&D-era rules was comparable to the cost of a small army or a decent little keep or a well-embellished (and well-fortified) temple complex. Not outside the reach of high-level PCs and other affluent folks, but not a trivial investment either. DM's can always impose additional costs (exotic magical components, etc) which are effectively unobtainable outside of heroic quests - thus severely limiting how many such constructs can be made.

And the problem with outsourcing golem construction is that you can never really be sure the constructing wizard hasn't embedded some sort of hidden commands or "backdoors" into the mental programming. DIY is the only way to go unless you want to risk being compromised by genius-level intellects which might not always be working in your best interests. Yes, such risk can be mitigated, the chance of Bad Things happening could be very small ... but the chance of Bad Things ultimately remains an unknown and the consequences of Bad Things could be catastrophically inconvenient.

[/Ayrik]

Edited by - Ayrik on 27 Aug 2018 20:28:47
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sleyvas
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USA
7513 Posts

Posted - 27 Aug 2018 :  21:06:21  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
As long as we're talking about golems and "strange methods of using them", I feel we should point out the concept used with the gemstone golems. Basically, circles were established, and then the circle leader could guide the golems from far away. I think this should make for an interesting way to make golems a lot cheaper, while employing lower level mages for some use. While there wasn't a whole lot of rules information presented in Spellbound for exactly how this worked, I like the idea that the red wizard controlling the circle is acting as the conduit or "center" and that the individual circle participants are each in control of a golem of lesser power. Alternatively the group may control a powerful golem.


For 5e, I wrote up this ritual spell for my Complete Red Book of Spell Strategy. It focuses on a given circle only controlling a single powerful golem, but it makes a relatively lower in level red wizard and a low level trio of apprentices able to manage to be useful from behind the lines by sending forward a golem.

Thayan Golem Control Circle
3rd-level (ritual)
Casting Time: 1 minute
Range: 1 mile
Components: V,S
Duration: Concentration, up to 1 hour

This ritual was originally developed to work with gemstone golems back in the mid 14th century Dalereckoning. However, it has been adapted over time to be able to work with nearly any golem (but not all constructs). This ritual is only usable by wizards with the “Bloodcowl Apprentice” feat and is not confined to any one “school of magic”. It is one of the few types of magic which the red wizards agree is known as universal magic, and its base concept is somewhat foreign for other wizards, thus the inability to add it to their class list. Essentially, this ritual enables red wizards to construct golems for the battlefield at a fraction of the cost (only the body need be constructed, at 20% the normal cost), but it also gives them no intelligence or motive ability unless they are controlled by a circle of red wizards. Often times these golems must be carted to the battlefield in wagons so that they may be used.
The caster of the spell is considered the circle leader for purposes of this spellcasting, and the circle may include up to 3 circle members (including the leader). This group may control a golem whose CR equals the level of the spell cast plus the number of members. If this number drops below the CR of the golem (for instance, if members die) then the golem becomes inert again. The circle leader can see through the golems eyes and use its other senses when he is control of the golem's body.
This ritual is generally seen less in large scale battles and more small scale conflicts in which multiple red wizards from different schools must work together against a common foe.
At Higher Levels. When you cast this ritual using a spell slot of 5th lvl or higher, the number of members who can participate in the ritual increases by one for every two spell slot levels above 3rd.

See the DMSGuild offering of “Bestiary of Faerun” page 36 authored by Leonaru which can be bought at www.DMsGuild.com for details of the gemstone golems

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas
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The Masked Mage
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USA
2040 Posts

Posted - 27 Aug 2018 :  22:30:49  Show Profile  Send The Masked Mage an AOL message  Click to see The Masked Mage's MSN Messenger address Send The Masked Mage a Private Message  Reply with Quote
One thing that I think has been mis-stated is about spirits powering golems and other automatons. In very few cases was this meant to indicate that the spirit would remain intact. For the most part, magical processes that required a spirit of some form (elemental, a soul, whatever) do not then allow that spirit control. Spirits are a form of power in D&D. Its the reason gods and devils and demons and wizards all want them. They are little engines for power. The sentience of the spirit is irrelevant in these terms.

I strongly recommend that you assume that any time you take a spirit and steal it and use it to power the life of an automoton, that spirit is destroyed and the energy is taken unless stated specifically in the description otherwise.

Note, that this does not include "entrapped" spirits.
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The Masked Mage
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Posted - 27 Aug 2018 :  22:33:42  Show Profile  Send The Masked Mage an AOL message  Click to see The Masked Mage's MSN Messenger address Send The Masked Mage a Private Message  Reply with Quote
As far as shape change goes, it might make sense for a wizard to become a golem briefly, but not to shapechange others into golems.

First, shapechange is not permanent, and by all normal rules, cannot be made permanent as it is a 9th level spell.

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Ayrik
Great Reader

Canada
6697 Posts

Posted - 28 Aug 2018 :  00:24:46  Show Profile Send Ayrik a Private Message  Reply with Quote
The 2E Ravenloft material had much to say about trapping "spirits" within golem shells. Van Richten's Guide to the Created described flesh golems in particular detail. Needless to say, such crafts invariably involve a great deal of evil suffering when on the Demiplane of Dread and Despair.

In typical D&D settings (like the Realms) there seems to be no real consequence to creating/conjuring/summoning/binding an animate "spirit" within a golem body. It's just another unremarkable and (even disposable) half-alive half-intelligent magical entity like a talking sword or a self-targeting spell.

[/Ayrik]
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Wooly Rupert
Master of Mischief
Moderator

USA
31595 Posts

Posted - 28 Aug 2018 :  04:51:10  Show Profile Send Wooly Rupert a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by The Masked Mage

One thing that I think has been mis-stated is about spirits powering golems and other automatons. In very few cases was this meant to indicate that the spirit would remain intact. For the most part, magical processes that required a spirit of some form (elemental, a soul, whatever) do not then allow that spirit control. Spirits are a form of power in D&D. Its the reason gods and devils and demons and wizards all want them. They are little engines for power. The sentience of the spirit is irrelevant in these terms.

I strongly recommend that you assume that any time you take a spirit and steal it and use it to power the life of an automoton, that spirit is destroyed and the energy is taken unless stated specifically in the description otherwise.

Note, that this does not include "entrapped" spirits.



I've decided to spin it a different way, partially inspired by barghests.

D&D barghests are extraplanar critters that have to earn enough hit dice to go back home... So why not use a similar approach for any summoned elemental spirit?

We know that there is a hierarchy of elementals and that they are intelligent and free-willed on their elemental plane.

Perhaps service in the mortal realm is a way to earn prestige back home, or at the least a way to get promoted from Class III Lesser Peon to Junior Executive Assistant Peon.

It could also be that the summoned spirits are nearly mindless, and time on the mortal realm is part of how their sentience develops. Once they're smart enough, they can ignore future summons and concentrate on the important business of elemental politics.

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LordofBones
Senior Scribe

833 Posts

Posted - 28 Aug 2018 :  08:03:24  Show Profile Send LordofBones a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Run-of-the-mill elementals don't seem to be particularly intelligent, though. Even the 64 HD primals have 8 Int. Maybe generic elementals are easier to summon because they're so, well, rudimentary; the more complex elemental creatures like efreeti are far more dangerous to deal with.

Of course, then the question is, why would any wizard want to bother binding intelligent creatures into constructs when the only change is that Smashy McCrush the golem now has an Int score and is liable to go crazy.
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TBeholder
Master of Realmslore

1743 Posts

Posted - 28 Aug 2018 :  08:09:14  Show Profile Send TBeholder a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by The Masked Mage

One thing that I think has been mis-stated is about spirits powering golems and other automatons. In very few cases was this meant to indicate that the spirit would remain intact. For the most part, magical processes that required a spirit of some form (elemental, a soul, whatever) do not then allow that spirit control. Spirits are a form of power in D&D. Its the reason gods and devils and demons and wizards all want them. They are little engines for power. The sentience of the spirit is irrelevant in these terms.

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

D&D barghests are extraplanar critters that have to earn enough hit dice to go back home... So why not use a similar approach for any summoned elemental spirit?
We know that there is a hierarchy of elementals and that they are intelligent and free-willed on their elemental plane.

Golems follow verbal commands, so they can understand those.
But most golems are bound so thoroughly they can't do anything at all, other than follow commands literally without asking for clarification.
Also, some types can "go wild" and rampage. Which makes sense if an elemental is unhappy with being bound into a golem indefinitely.
Presumably, these have bindings not quite strong enough.
BTW it could be a reason for spell immunity: the bindings are simply too strong to breach in either direction; there's always a subset of effects that are not blocked, but those are already covered by elemental's own immunities and summoning spell's safeguards.

People never wonder How the world goes round -Helloween
And even I make no pretense Of having more than common sense -R.W.Wood
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Ayrik
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Canada
6697 Posts

Posted - 28 Aug 2018 :  16:44:06  Show Profile Send Ayrik a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:

Run-of-the-mill elementals don't seem to be particularly intelligent, though. Even the 64 HD primals have 8 Int.
Hit Dice and Intelligence are two different things.

We can construct massive and superhumanly powerful machines - anything from a self-guided mach 5 cruise missile to an industrial robot arm capable of lifting tons to a passenger 747 the size of a small ship - and we can equip these things with just barely enough "intelligence" to automatically perform their functions. They're even able to "learn" and "adapt" within a very confined set of parameters, they can be trusted and left unattended in routine conditions but they are incapable of performing as well as an "average" human intelligence for any task beyond those expectations. And yes, like any other computer or machine, they'll "blindly" execute whatever commands they've been given, very tenaciously and very literally, even when it leads them towards decisions or results which any real intelligence would instantly recognize as flawed and stupid.

[/Ayrik]

Edited by - Ayrik on 28 Aug 2018 16:48:02
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The Masked Mage
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Posted - 29 Aug 2018 :  00:54:16  Show Profile  Send The Masked Mage an AOL message  Click to see The Masked Mage's MSN Messenger address Send The Masked Mage a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Ask yourself whether you would want to bind an elemental spirit into that self-guided mach 5 cruise missile... WHY would you do that if its not needed. Seems like going a LONG way out of your way to greatly increase the chances of blowing yourself up with that missile.
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Thraskir Skimper
Learned Scribe

195 Posts

Posted - 29 Aug 2018 :  01:44:28  Show Profile Send Thraskir Skimper a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Does anyone use a Behemoth Golem?

Thay Red
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sleyvas
Great Reader

USA
7513 Posts

Posted - 29 Aug 2018 :  03:16:19  Show Profile Send sleyvas a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by The Masked Mage

One thing that I think has been mis-stated is about spirits powering golems and other automatons. In very few cases was this meant to indicate that the spirit would remain intact. For the most part, magical processes that required a spirit of some form (elemental, a soul, whatever) do not then allow that spirit control. Spirits are a form of power in D&D. Its the reason gods and devils and demons and wizards all want them. They are little engines for power. The sentience of the spirit is irrelevant in these terms.

I strongly recommend that you assume that any time you take a spirit and steal it and use it to power the life of an automoton, that spirit is destroyed and the energy is taken unless stated specifically in the description otherwise.

Note, that this does not include "entrapped" spirits.



Agreed with this I would think for many instances, and there are situations where they've found a way to bind the spirit without destroying the being. This may be in situations besides golems too, so like if they bind a fire elemental spirit into a vessel that will continually heat water to make steam. By not destroying the spirit they're able to draw upon its natural link to the elemental plane of fire more easily. I would also bet that many of the lesser intelligent magic items are "accidents" in using soul energies, and that's why many intelligent magic items can't even really think clearly, might only convey basic emotions, etc.... Now, whether they are accidents where the person MEANT to make something more intelligent OR an accident where they wanted something basic and the intelligence crept in....

Alavairthae, may your skill prevail

Phillip aka Sleyvas

Edited by - sleyvas on 29 Aug 2018 03:17:13
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Storyteller Hero
Learned Scribe

USA
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Posted - 29 Aug 2018 :  03:41:43  Show Profile  Visit Storyteller Hero's Homepage Send Storyteller Hero a Private Message  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by LordofBones

quote:
Originally posted by Wooly Rupert

I've never even heard of wizards shape-changing into golems. I can't say that I see a point to that.



3.5e shapechange allows you to take on any form of any creature under 25 HD. Of course, the original post does beg the question of how you'd keep 17th level wizards in your service as mere guards.







One could always offer a good dental plan and a plate of tacos.



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The Masked Mage
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Posted - 29 Aug 2018 :  04:46:13  Show Profile  Send The Masked Mage an AOL message  Click to see The Masked Mage's MSN Messenger address Send The Masked Mage a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I just finished re-reading Masquerades. A line near the end of the book made me laugh and think of Thraskir and this topic:

"...Fortunately, knowing the Faceless had iron golems at his disposal, I had actually prepared a slow poison spell."
"Because iron golems sometimes breath poison gas," Alias explained.
"But the golems at the ball were the cheap Thayan kind, so they didn't," Olive noted.

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Thraskir Skimper
Learned Scribe

195 Posts

Posted - 10 Sep 2018 :  04:29:06  Show Profile Send Thraskir Skimper a Private Message  Reply with Quote
First off my adventuring parties are typically 2-3 Red Wizards and 1-2 Clerics or Druids of Beshaba or Kossuth. Shape changing into a Golem is typically done if a situation calls for walking through a spell trapped hallway or battering down a door, taking a sharp object away from a paladin or ignoring a few dozen Kobold. Also works great against a Rakshasa or Beholder. etc...

There is also the Pale Master that uses a Golem Arm instead of Undead arm. This could be a Transhumanist specialist Class or a set of Golem Feats replacing body parts with Golem parts or just taking a Golem form. Visiting Baneish Thay surrounded by undead who tend to leave Golem alone when either Shape Changed or Magic Jarring or with replacement parts. Yes some Red Wizards do have hearts of stone, are virtually ageless and or can walk day or night through the hottest deserts, coldest glaciers, underwater caves, or the like. Iron Golem may rust but Stone Golem don't. Flesh Golem don't need to be Frankenstein Monster forms. You can look just like you did before or like someone altogether different. Some people are personae Non Grata in Thay in their known forms. Of course there are spells to figure out who they are if you know what to look for.

But if my Characters are going somewhere Dangerous they either carry a folding Golem or two or Take a dozen Stone, Iron, or an Adamantine Golem along. Depends where one is going or if you might have to leave them behind. Don't want to leave an Adamantine Golem behind. The City of Peril has a StoneWall with 10 foot Stone Giants carved into the walls. One every 10 feet of its 2000 feet of wall. Iron Guards 12 feet Tall at the Gates and each College has Mithral Guards at the front Doors with at least one Red Adamantine Statue of a Wizard 18 feet Tall.

Some people have smelly Undead surrounding or travelling with them, others live in grave yards. I prefer the clean non scented Golem Silently standing guard.

Of course not all golem are 10/12/15/18 feet tall. 5'7" foot Slim Stone Golem models that stand next to the beds of every Mage in Peril arms out holding spare robes and night attire or to strangle the Assassin that slips in and hides under the bed. Not Every coat rack is just a coat rack no matter who or what it looks like. And not every bed warming Flesh Golem is a hideous monster. Peril where your luck runs out, where the traps just can't be found or disarmed, and where just about every corner has a statue standing next to it seemingly watching you. If you are supposed to be there you are able to just wander around. If you are not, well you won't get very far.

Thay Red
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Fineva
Seeker

Canada
68 Posts

Posted - 10 Sep 2018 :  05:10:45  Show Profile Send Fineva a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Rather unfortunate the picture I got in Mulmaster working for Thay. We were sent by Darlon to the Great Glacier to investigate a Netherese lab. The supplies prepared for us were the finest fresh food, we discovered a half dozen camps in a two day March as we followed the lost Thayan Red Wizards, and well.... They weren't capable of doing more than four hours before setting up silk tents and wagonloads of fresh bread, fruit etc.

Not hardened as the propaganda above.

Too bad they all died horribly, I'd have loved to talk to some of them about the food.

I"
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LordofBones
Senior Scribe

833 Posts

Posted - 10 Sep 2018 :  08:37:59  Show Profile Send LordofBones a Private Message  Reply with Quote
"A dozen adamantine golems"

Man, I don't even know where to start, or what kind of campaign you're playing in that lets wizards lug around 54 HD, CR 25 golems, much less a dozen of them.
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