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December 18th, 2009

Adapting the Good Stuff

The one 4E class worth retrofitting to 3.5, the Warlord, is available for Pathfinder, so I'll be incorporating that into my new 3.5 game, although I'll be renaming it "Captain."

By a roundabout quirk of fate, the Warlord is actually an evolution of the Marshal from Miniatures Handbook, which is already in 3.5. But the Warlord is a better class than the Marshal for various reasons IMO, so I'll be using the retrofitted 3.5 version of a 4E evolution of a 3.5 class. *boggle*

Can you tell I'm still geeking out about it?

-The Gneech

Oh Captain! My Captain!

First pass ... input welcome!

Captain (base class)


Hit Die: d8
BAB: +3/4 (like Cleric)
Weapon Prof: Simple, Martial
Armor Prof: Light, Medium, Shields
Good Saves: Fort, Will
Skill Points/Level: 4 + Int mod
Class Skills: Bluff (Cha), Diplomacy (Cha), Handle Animal (Cha), Heal (Wis), Intimidate (Cha), Knowledge (Int) (all skills, taken individually), Perform (Cha), Ride (Dex), Sense Motive (Wis), Speak Language (n/a), Spot (Wis), Survival (Wis), Swim (Str)

1 - Combat Leader, Commanding Presence +1, Inspiration 1d6
2 - Bonus Feat
3 - Grant 5' Step 1/day
4 - Inspiration 2d6
5 - Trusted Commander, Commanding Presence +2
6 - From the Brink 1/day
7 - Grant Move Action 1/day
8 - Inspiration 3d6
9 - Cry Havoc!
10 - From the Brink 2/day, Commanding Presence +3
11 - Rallying Presence
12 - Inspiration 4d6
13 - Grant Move Action 2/day
14 - From the Brink 3/day
15 - Onslaught, Commanding Presence +4
16 - Inspiration 5d6
17 - Grant Standard Action 1/day
18 - Dangerous Gambit
19 - Grant Standard Action 2/day
20 - Inspiration 6d6, Commanding Presence +5

Combat Leader: All allies within (3 + Cha mod) squares gain +2 Initiative

Commanding Presence: Edit: Once per day, as a standard action, grant all allies within line of sight Edit: a competence bonus of +1 to attack and damage rolls until the end of the encounter Edit: as a swift action. This bonus is lost if you are incapacitated or line of sight is broken. You may do this (3 + Cha mod) times per day. The bonus increases to +2 at 5th level, +3 at 10th level, +4 at 15th level, and +5 at 20th level. Edit: With each bonus increase, the number of times per day you may grant this bonus goes up by a corresponding number, e.g., 2/day at 5th level, etc.

Inspiration: As a standard action, use your leadership ability to grant allies within (3 + Cha mod) squares 1d6 temporary hit points a number of times per day equal to (3 + Cha mod). These do not stack with other sources of temporary hit points, and disappear at the end of the encounter. This increases by +1d6 at 4th, 8th, 12th, 16th, and 20th levels (maximum 6d6). This is a sonic, mind-affecting effect.

Grant 5' Step: Beginning at 3rd level, once per day as a swift action, you may grant an ally within (3 + Cha mod) squares a free 5' step (but not yourself). This takes place on your initiative count and does not alter the initiative order. You may not grant more than one action of any kind on any given turn.

Trusted Commander: Beginning at 5th level, allies retain their bonus from Commanding Presence regardless of whether you are within line of sight or not.

From the Brink: Starting at 6th level, once per day, as a standard action, you may rally an adjacent Edit: foe ally who is at 0 or fewer hit points (but not dead), returning them to stable condition with 1 hit point. You gain an additional use of this ability per day at 10th level and 14th level.

Grant Move Action: Beginning at 7th level, once per day as a swift action, you may grant an ally within (3 + Cha mod) squares a free move action (but not yourself). This takes place on your initiative count and does not alter the initiative order. Any move action they would normally be allowed to take on their turn, they may take at this time; if the action would normally provoke an attack of opportunity, it still does so. You gain an additional use of this ability at 13th level, but may not grant more than one action of any kind on any given turn.

Cry Havoc!: At 9th level, once per encounter you may designate a target within line of sight as a swift action. Until the beginning of your next turn, yourself and all allies within line of sight gain a Edit: morale bonus to attack and damage rolls equal to your Cha mod against that target. (This stacks with your Commanding Presence benefit.)

Rallying Presence: Starting at 11th level, you grant all allies within (3 + Cha mod) squares a Edit: morale bonus equal to your Cha modifier to saving throws. This bonus is lost if you are incapacitated or line of sight is broken.

Onslaught: At 15th level, once per day you may designate a target within line of sight as a standard action. You and all of your allies within line of sight immediately get a free attack against that target. You must have a viable attack ready to take advantage of this attack (i.e., have a loaded ranged weapon or be within melee range).

Grant Standard Action: Beginning at 13th level, once per day as a swift action, you may grant an ally within (3 + Cha mod) squares a free standard action (but not yourself). This takes place on your initiative count and does not alter the initiative order. Any standard action they would normally be allowed to take on their turn, they may take at this time; if the action would normally provoke an attack of opportunity, it still does so. This is in addition to the benefits conveyed by Grant Move Action, but you may not grant more than one action of any kind on any given turn. You gain an additional use of this ability at 17th level.

Dangerous Gambit: Once per encounter, when you or an ally within (3 + Cha mod) squares are flanked, you may swap places with that ally or one of the flanking attackers as a move action. You must have line of sight and clear terrain between yourself and the creature with whom you are swapping places. This takes place on your initiative count and does not alter the initiative order; it does provoke an attack of opportunity if your or your ally's movement would normally due to threatened squares. However, if you succeed at a Bluff check against a DC equal to 10 + the target's Will save, they do not get to make the attack of opportunity. If multiple attacks of opportunity are provoked, you must make a Bluff check against each one separately, with a cumulative penalty of -2 for every check after the first.

Bonus Feats: You gain a bonus feat at 2nd level and 19th level. These feats must be chosen from the following: Armor Proficiency (Heavy), Combat Expertise, Mounted Combat, Skill Focus, a few others I haven't picked yet ;)


Whattya think, sirs?

-The Gneech
As he is a stand-in for the Cleric, should he have more debuff removals? Is there a way for morale to remove poison/disease? Typically a Cleric provides buffs (bless, aid, prayer, bull's strength, et al.), heals/raises, and removes debuffs (delay poison, remove disease, etc.). The Captain as written provides buffs and a certain amount of "preventative" healing (i.e., he can give you a damage shield rather than patch you up when you're hit), but he also gives extra actions, which can sometimes make an even bigger difference in a fight or at the very least enable people to buff/remove debuffs from themselves via potions.

How about debuffing enemies? Clerics can also do the whole curse thing ... could a Captain's intimidating demeanor in battle provide morale penalties to his foes? Perhaps the Captain should get an ability that lets him use the Intimidate skill to cause a fear effect or some such.

Actually, if I was going to go all-out with this class, I'd probably create a pool of gambits he could draw from, akin to Bardic music or a Cleric's spells ... although the net result would probably end up going back to looking like the original Marshal. :D But as this is something I want to be able to easily put into E-Tools and use without a lot of headaches, I probably won't go that far.

-The Gneech

Captain, Take Two

Okay! I think I've got a winner here. Comments and suggestions still welcome, tho. :)

Captain (base class)


Hit Die: d8
BAB: +3/4 (like Cleric)
Weapon Prof: Simple, Martial
Armor Prof: Light, Medium, Shields
Good Saves: Fort, Will
Skill Points/Level: 4 + Int mod
Class Skills: Bluff (Cha), Diplomacy (Cha), Handle Animal (Cha), Heal (Wis), Intimidate (Cha), Knowledge (Int) (all skills, taken individually), Perform (Cha), Ride (Dex), Sense Motive (Wis), Speak Language (n/a), Spot (Wis), Survival (Wis), Swim (Str)

LVL    FEATURE
1 - Combat Leader, Commanding Presence +1, Inspiration 1d6
2 - Bolster Ally 1/day
3 - Grant/Force 5' Step 1/day
4 - Inspiration 2d6
5 - Trusted Commander, Commanding Presence +2
6 - Bolster Ally 2/day, Defiant Challenge
7 - Grant Move Action 1/day
8 - Inspiration 3d6
9 - Cry Havoc!
10 - Bolster Ally 3/day, Commanding Presence +3
11 - Defensive Gambit
12 - Inspiration 4d6
13 - Grant Move Action 2/day
14 - Bolster Ally 4/day
15 - Onslaught, Commanding Presence +4
16 - Inspiration 5d6
17 - Grant Standard Action 1/day
18 - Dangerous Gambit
19 - Grant Standard Action 2/day
20 - Inspiration 6d6, Commanding Presence +5

Combat Leader (Ex)
All allies within (3 + Cha mod) squares gain a +2 competence bonus to Initiative checks.

Commanding Presence (Ex)
Once per day, as a standard action, grant all allies within line of sight a competence bonus of +1 to attack and damage rolls until the end of the encounter. This bonus is lost if you are incapacitated or line of sight is broken. The bonus increases to +2 at 5th level, +3 at 10th level, +4 at 15th level, and +5 at 20th level. With each bonus increase, the number of times per day you may grant this bonus goes up by a corresponding number, e.g., 2/day at 5th level, etc.

Inspiration (Ex)
Once per day, as a standard action, use your leadership ability to grant allies within (3 + Cha mod) squares 1d6 temporary hit points. These do not stack with other sources of temporary hit points, and disappear at the end of the encounter. This increases by +1d6 and +1 use/day at 4th, 8th, 12th, 16th, and 20th levels (maximum 6d6). This is a sonic, mind-affecting effect.

Bolster Ally (Ex)
Once per day as a standard action, you may attempt to bolster an imperiled ally adjacent to you, either by restoring hit points or granting them an extra saving throw. Granting hit points: If the ally is at 1/2 their total hit points or lower, you may restore to them a number of hit points equal to their level plus your Cha bonus. Granting a saving throw: If your ally is subject to a condition that would be ended by a saving throw (e.g. an illusion), they may immediate make a saving throw with a morale bonus equal to your Cha bonus. You gain an additional use per day of this ability at 6th, 10th, and 14th levels.

Grant/Force 5' Step (Ex)
Once per day as a swift action, you may grant an ally within (3 + Cha mod) squares a free 5' step (but not yourself); alternatively, you may use this ability to force an adjacent enemy up to one size category larger than yourself to take a 5' step into a safe space of your choice. This takes place on your initiative count and does not alter the initiative order. You may not grant/force more than one action of any kind on any given turn.

Trusted Commander (Ex)
Beginning at 5th level, allies retain their bonus from Commanding Presence regardless of whether you are within line of sight or not.

Defiant Challenge (Ex)
As a standard action, you attempt to taunt, threaten, or demoralize your foes within line of sight by making an Intimidate check vs. a DC equal to (10 + their Will save). If your check beats the DC, the target takes a -2 penalty on all attack rolls, saving throws, skill checks, and ability checks for a number of rounds equal to 1/2 your Captain levels. This is a sonic, mind-affecting effect. There is no limit to the number of times you may attempt this, but regardless of success or failure, any creature targeted is immune to any further Defiant Challenge attempts from you for the next 24 hours.

Grant Move Action (Ex)
Once per day as a swift action, you may grant an ally within (3 + Cha mod) squares a free move action (but not yourself). This takes place on your initiative count and does not alter the initiative order. Any move action they would normally be allowed to take on their turn, they may take at this time; if the action would normally provoke an attack of opportunity, it still does so. You gain an additional use of this ability at 13th level, but may not grant more than one action of any kind on any given turn.

Defensive Gambit (Ex)
Once per encounter, as a standard action, you may give all of your allies within line of sight a chance to regroup. They have the option of immediately taking a free 5' step, or gaining a competence bonus to AC and saving throws equal to your Cha modifier until the beginning of your next turn.

Cry Havoc! (Ex)
Once per encounter you may designate a target within line of sight as a swift action. Until the beginning of your next turn, you and all allies within line of sight gain a morale bonus to attack and damage rolls equal to your Cha mod against that target. (This stacks with your Commanding Presence benefit.)

Onslaught (Ex)
Once per day you may designate a target within line of sight as a standard action. You and all of your allies within line of sight immediately get a free attack against that target. You must have a viable attack ready to take advantage of this attack (i.e., have a loaded ranged weapon or be within melee range).

Grant Standard Action (Ex)
Once per day as a swift action, you may grant an ally within (3 + Cha mod) squares a free standard action (but not yourself). This takes place on your initiative count and does not alter the initiative order. Any standard action they would normally be allowed to take on their turn, they may take at this time; if the action would normally provoke an attack of opportunity, it still does so. This is in addition to the benefits conveyed by Grant Move Action, but you may not grant more than one action of any kind on any given turn. You gain an additional use of this ability at 17th level.

Dangerous Gambit (Ex)
Once per encounter, when you or an ally within (3 + Cha mod) squares are flanked, you may swap places with that ally or one of the flanking attackers as a move action. You must have line of sight and clear terrain between yourself and the creature with whom you are swapping places. This takes place on your initiative count and does not alter the initiative order; it does provoke an attack of opportunity if your or your ally's movement would normally do so due to threatened squares. However, if you succeed at a Bluff check against a DC equal to (10 + the target's Will save), they do not get to make the attack of opportunity. If multiple attacks of opportunity are provoked, you must make a Bluff check against each one separately, with a cumulative penalty of -2 for every check after the first.


Comments
"Bolster Ally" replaced both the "Bolstering Presence" and "From the Brink" features. This was designed to both simplify the class, and add a little more versatility. As mentioned in my earlier post, the Captain's job is not only that of a combat healer, but also as a debuff remover.

"Grant/Force 5' Step" was added to give the Captain a little more in the way of aggressive powers. While he has a respectable BAB and hit die, he's not exactly a tank (especially since he has to buy Heavy Armor Proficiency with his own feats if he wants it) ... I figured players might like a slightly more direct way of hurting the enemy than just making the barbarian's attack more devastating. I didn't want to make it a "Free Bull Rush with No Attack Roll" power -- that would have been too much -- but it's a good way of doing things like backing an enemy into range of the rogue's sneak attack -- or forcing the enemy away from the wizard.

"Defiant Challenge" is designed to give the Captain a little debuffing ability of his own. It's no symbol of fear, perhaps, but it's enough to give your enemies trouble.

"Defensive Gambit" is pretty straightforward ... most of the abilities up to now have been noticeably offensive in nature, I thought it would be good to have at least one defensive maneuver in there.

Bonus Types: I gave all bonuses a type (or at least tried to, I may have missed some buried in the text). Most of them are competence bonuses, to reflect the idea that the Captain makes the party operate like a well-oiled machine. But a few are morale bonuses, to indicate that the Captain has inspired the characters to greatness (and to make Cry Havoc! more useful because it stacks with the Commanding Presence bonus the party is likely to be getting at the same time).

Bonus Feats: Alas, I had to lose the bonus feats, or the class would have been piling on. Too bad, I love bonus feats, and I was figuring that a natural progression would be for the Captain to take Heavy Armor Proficiency as a bonus feat later instead of burning a personal feat on it.

There may be more tweaks depending on commentary, but I think this is pretty close to done.

-The Gneech

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