View Full Version : [PRC,TOB] Sword of the Elements

2010-03-24, 09:38 AM
It's interesting what you find when you look up all the old stuff on your hard drive. I, for example, have found roughly half a dozen Tome of Battle Prestige classes I wrote before I strated to seriously work on Serpents and Sewers.

I have translated these classes yesterday, and updated them a bit, but really, they are in their core two or three years old. For me, it's somewhat interesting how a few ideas which were later copied in S&S appeared here for the first time. Seriously, these include my first step in homebrewing for D&D.

Now, these are Prestige Classes how I like them: focused on beating people up, and actually quite competent in this field of expertise. If you ask me, the overwhelming majority of prestige classes for the already underrepresented melee fighters are much too weak, especially when compared to *any* prestige class with full caster level progression. Therefore, they might appear a bit powerful when compared to other fighter -specific prestige classes.


The Sword of the Elements
THe Sword of the Elements is a very small school which takes the terminology of "sword magic" more literally than others. The first Sword of the Elements, Nialle, asked herself how it could be that a Swordsage can so easily call upon the powers of fire, while the other elements remained mostly hidden to them. She studied the lore of the elements and even travelled to the elemental planes, and eventually, she found an answer. Then she overcame the old burden and learned that it is not the element that makes the difference, it is the one who summons it.
Nialle and her few students have mastered the art of elemental magic through swordfighting. They have adapted the once predictable Desert Wind martial school into a highly flexible combat form, and likewise master the essentials of elemental magic.

Design Notes:
Basically, the Sword of the Elements is yet another Gish. It has powerful but very narrowly focused spellcasting abilities, it can bring up many different types of energy damage, and it can fight almost as well as a usual swordsage.

BAB: +5
Skills:Martial Lore 6 ranks, Tumble 7 ranks, Knowledge (the Planes) 3 Ranks
Feats: Blade Meditation (Desert Wind)
Maneuvers: At least two maneuvers of second or higher level from the Desert Wind discipline

Class-Skills: Balance, Climb, Concentration, Craft, Diplomacy, Hide, Intimidate, Jump, Knowledge (Arcana), Knowledge (Religion), Knowledge (the Planes), Listen, Martial Lore, Profession, Ride, Spellcraft, Spot and Tumble.

Skill-points per level: 4+Int modifier

Hit Dice: D6

Table: The Sword of the Elements
{table="head"]Level|BAB|Fort|Ref|Will|Special|known M.|prepared M.|Stances|1st|2nd|3rd|4th|5th|6th|7th|8th|9th
1st|+0|+0|+0|+2|Alternative Energy: Electricity|-|-|-|0|-|-|-|-|-|-|-|-
2nd|+1|+0|+0|+3|Turn/Rebuke Elementals|+1|-|-|1|0|-|-|-|-|-|-|-
3rd|+2|+1|+1|+3|Alternative Energy: Cold|-|-|-|2|1|0|-|-|-|-|-|-
5th|+3|+1|+1|+4|Alternative Energy: Acid|-|+1|-|3|2|2|1|0|-|-|-|-
7th|+5|+2|+2|+5|Alternative Energy: Sound|-|-|-|3|3|3|2|2|1|0|-|-
9th|+6|+3|+3|+6|Elemental Combination|-|-|-|3|3|3|3|3|2|2|1|0

Spells: A Sword of the Elements gains the ability to cast a small number of divine spells, which are drawn from a very limited list. A Sword of the Elements must choose and prepare her spells in advance. Swords of the Elements can only cast the spells from the domain spell list of the air, earth, fire and water domain. They do not gain the domain special abilities.
To prepare or cast a spell, a Sword of the Elements must have a Wisdom score equal to at least 10 + the spell level. The Difficulty Class for a saving throw against a Sword of the 's spell is 10 + the spell level + the Sword of the Elements' Wisdom modifier.
Like other spellcasters, a Sword of the Elements can cast only a certain number of spells of each spell level per day. Her base daily spell allotment is given on Table: The Sword of the Elements . In addition, he receives bonus spells per day if she has a high Wisdom score.
A Sword of the Elements prepares and casts spells the way a cleric does, though he cannot lose a prepared spell to spontaneously cast a cure spell in its place. A Sword of the Elements may prepare and cast any spell on the Air, Earth, Fire or Water domain spell lists, provided that she can cast spells of that level, but she must choose which spells to prepare during her daily meditation.
A Sword of the Elements has a caster level equal to his class level.

Maneuvers and Stances: At each even level, the Sword of the Elements learns a new maneuver from the Desert Wind, Setting Sun, Shadow Hand, Stone Dragon or Tiger Claw discipline. At 5th and 10th level, the character gains a new readied maneuver per encounter.
At 4th and 8th level, the Sword of the Elements also gains a new stance.

Alternative Energy (Su): Starting at first level, a Sword of the Elements can substitute all fire damage resulting from Desert Wind maneuvers through a different type of energy. Doing so reduces the size of the damage dice by one step (e.g. 1d6 of fire damage become 1d4 of the new damage type). At first level, the Sword of the Elements can only substitute the fire damage through electricity damage, but as the Sword of the Elements advance in class levels, she learns to channel different types of energy as well.

Turn/Rebuke Elementals (Su): A Sword of the Elements can turn or rebuke creatures with an elemental subtype like a cleric can turn or rebuke undead creatures. The Sword of the Elements may attempt to turn or rebuke Elementals a number of times per day equal to 3 + his Charisma modifier. A cleric with 5 or more ranks in Knowledge (the Planes) gets a +2 bonus on turning checks against Elementals. For the purpose of the turning or rebuking, the Sword of the Elements is treated as a cleric of a level equal to his ECL -3.
The Turn/Rebuke Elementals ability cannot act as a substitute for Turn Undead when it comes for the qualification of classes or feats, neither can it used for Divine Metamagic or a similar ability fueled by Turning attempts.

Elemental Combination (Su): Starting on 9th level, a Sword of the Elements no longer reduces the substituted elemental energy by one dice step and might only substitute a part of the additional fire damage from a Desert Wind maneuver into a different energy type.

2010-03-24, 09:43 AM
Maybe rename it from Energy Substitution? Since that would imply requiring Divine Metamagic, as a Cleric would when applying that metamagic feat to a spell.

Seems a little lacking in class features for what it is, and potentially a little weak. But, nice idea.

2010-03-24, 09:56 AM
9th level spells, even when they are only from a very limited list are rarely weak. Okay, in this case, it is only Elemental Swarm, but still...

Sure, it is not as strong as a real caster, but compared to a standard Swordsage, it gets a complete new set of options and still gains some of the Swordsage's usual goodies.

Renaming the ability is a good idea, though.

2010-03-24, 03:19 PM
Ok. Main issue about how initiating PrCs progress which I already mentioned in the other thread.

very small school whih takes the terminology of "sword magic" more literary

element that is the devcisive part,

Do you mean decisive?

"which" and "literally".

I like the limited spell list and small number of spells which makes the 9th level spell access potentially balanced although I can see some weird things happening (such as potentially using this to qualify for Ruby Knight Vindicator). But given the fluff, it might make more sense for them to be an arcane caster. Maybe the same spell list but cast as arcane spells? If they are going to stay as divine casters maybe they should have Knowledge (Religion) as a class skill.

2010-03-24, 04:13 PM
I have adjusted the maneuver progression to the usual form.

If they are going to stay as divine casters maybe they should have Knowledge (Religion) as a class skill.

That is a good idea.