I wanted to make a weaker succubus character, so I didn’t need all the features of the ECL 12 version in the Monster Manual. Savage Species offers a progression on pages 195-197 that gives everything I really want by ECL 5–problem being, that’s still 3 HD with a +2 LA. But that’s at least way better than 6 HD, LA+6, so I decided to go with it, at least as a starting point.
(The specific homebrew aspects are as follows: 1: Savage Species says you need to finish an entire progression, but I’m cutting it off at ECL 5 to describe a “lesser succubus”–characters can’t take any more Succubus class levels even if they wanted to. 2: Since Savage Species is 3.0, where succubi had way more spell-like abilities and a few other differences compared to 3.5, I’m taking only the features they have in common–so claws that deal 1d3, SLAs beginning and ending with detect good, detect thoughts, and suggestion, and only the following class skills: Bluff, Concentration, Disguise, Escape Artist, Hide, Knowledge (any 1), Listen, Move Silently, Search, and Spot. In the case of Alternate Form/Change Shape which is inconsistent between editions, I just made it work like the Changeling ability (RoE p.41), but usable as a standard action and with the option to hide wings/tail. 3: Since bonus languages aren’t listed, I gave it “Any” (other than Druidic, etc.). 4: Since favored classes aren’t specified beyond the Succubus class used for the savage progression, I made its favored classes any of the three listed as “the best multiclassing choices” (p.197), whichever one the character takes a level in first. 5: A very minor change to its type/subtype, to make it Native. 6: Not a change to the race itself, but while Savage Species only ever tells players to use standard ability score assignments, the character uses a 15-point point buy and doesn’t gain full hit points from her first HD, to represent being nonelite (with the huge racial ability score bonuses, the result is an ability score array that isn’t too far from what a standard character gets, anyway))
Almost everything that the ECL 5 “lesser succubus” has is important, so I don’t want to remove features beyond what I’ve taken out already. But LA+2 is pretty harsh (and LA is just dumb anyway), so I’d like to get rid of that, too. I don’t want to add any class levels, so LA Buyoff is sadly not going to work. I’m willing to add RHD, although I worry that doing so might give the race combat strength approaching the “full-powered succubus”. All in all, my goal is to bring the level adjustment to +0 (and keep it at +0, from character creation all the way to 20th level+) without sacrificing racial features, and ideally without increasing number of HD (but absolutely not giving more HD than the MM succubus).
(I’d rather keep the race as intact as possible, but I am willing to get rid of detect good, which is alright but not as useful as the other SLAs, and the Automatic Languages, which are made pretty much obsolete by tongues. A lower NA bonus would be acceptable, but NA is always nice so I’d like to keep it as high as I can)
It’s my understanding that nothing fully-RAW will get the race where I’d like it. So how can I accomplish the stated goals while being as-close-to-RAW-as-possible? Minor homebrew and/or cheese is welcome where necessary.
(Also, it’s not campaign-dependent, so I can’t just “ask the DM”. Ideally I’d like a general-use setup that’s as close to “legal” as possible. In effect, if joining campaigns and convincing DMs to allow homebrew races is a skill check, I’d like to keep the DC as low as possible, so that out of X-many possible DMs, a higher percentage of them would theoretically approve.)