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View Full Version : [3.5 ToB Base Class] Guru Redux (PEACH)



Callos_DeTerran
2011-06-28, 02:33 PM
http://img600.imageshack.us/img600/3514/guruo.jpgThe yogi Tai Jun at peace with his surroundings.


Guru

The guru are those who are the teachers and mentors of those seeking the perfection of martial ability, but their own path has taken them away from the physical perfection that the warblade seeks, the devotion to a cause the crusader holds dear, and the mixture of knowledge that the swordsage holds as vaunted above all else. Instead of training their bodies, gurus train their minds and spirits with the mastery of some of the most mystical disciplines being the reward for their dedication. It isnít the sharp edge of steel that a guru brings to bear on his foes but rather frigid cold, inner peace, scorching fire, mighty tempests, killer noise, and the chill of death that confront his enemies and cast them down to the ground broken by the manipulation of the guruís powerful elemental spirit. Within the lands of the Empire, guru are masters of martial arts that are revered for their wisdom and skill, some earning positions as advisers to governors and nobles. Most, however, remain secluded in remote monasteries and temples, content to delve into the spiritual mysteries of the world until some great call to action compels these holy men and women to action. Some have even gone so far as to become total recluses, living out their days in complete solitude in reportedly sacred places

Adventures: A guru may leave their secluded retreats for many reasons. Perhaps they wish to pass on the knowledge of their skills to an apprentice or to test the merits of their training against some great menace that threatens the land. Sometimes it is as simple as the guru seeking money for supplies before returning for another long retreat from the world at large. For the more idealistic of their kind, some guru seek to repair what they see is a broken system that focuses on the material. MoreÖunscrupulous gurus might merely be seeking to establish the legend of their skill through death-duels with other legendary martial adepts and for them the reason to travel the world is no greater then finding the mightiest warrior they can find and rending him or her limb from limb for the sake of their own legend.

Characteristics: Ancient martial masters with the power to turn the primal elements of the world against their enemies, a guru will sometimes be mistaken for a wizard or cleric from the abilities that make them such a valued ally and terrible foe. Despite their generally old age, gurus prove to be quite spry when it comes to getting to hard to reach places which has proven frustrating from those who would try to keep one contained or imprisoned.

However their rigorous spiritual training has the additional benefit of making gurus resistant to things that would adversely affect their mind or body, much to the chagrin of many a spellcaster or poisoner. Such intensive focus leaves them rather susceptible to abuse though which has earned them some derision from those wither hardier bodies and lacking the wits to appreciate the knowledge that a guru can offer.

Alignment: Like many martial adepts, the rigorous training regime required to become a guru gives them a tendency to be lawful though others, especially those who acquired their talents by intuitiveness or through association with the natural world tend to neutral or chaotic alignments. gurus however run the gamut of good and evil, never leaning exclusively towards one side or the other.

Hit Dice: d6
Starting Gold: 4d4x10 (100 gp).
Starting Age: Usually old or venerable.
Class Skills (4 + Int modifier, x4 at first level): Balance, Climb, Concentration, Craft, Escape Artist, Gather Information, Handle Animal, Heal, Hide, Intimidate, Jump, Knowledge (Arcana, Dungeoneering, Geography, History, Nature, Religion, the planes), Listen, Martial Lore*, Move Silently, Profession, Sense Motive, Sleight of Hand, Spot, Swim, Tumble.

guru
{table=head]Level|Base Attack Bonus|Fort Save|Ref Save|Will Save|
Special|Maneuvers Known|Maneuvers Readied|Stances
1st|+0|
+2|
+2|
+2
|AC bonus, improved unarmed strike, Ki Focus 1/day|
6|
4|
1

2nd|+1|
+3|
+3|
+3|Evasion|
7|
4|
2

3rd|+2|
+3|
+3|
+3|Purity of Body|
8|
5|
2

4th|+3|
+4|
+4|
+4|AC bonus +1, Ki Focus 2/day |
9|
5|
2

5th|+3|
+4|
+4|
+4|Discipline Mastery|
10|
6|
3

6th|+4|
+5|
+5|
+5|Mettle|
11|
6
|
3

7th|+5|
+5|
+5|
+5
|Empathy|
12|
6|
3

8th|+6/+1|
+6|
+6|
+6|AC bonus +2 Ki Focus 3/day|
13|
7|
3

9th|+6/+1|
+6|
+6|
+6|Diamond Body|
14|
7|
4

10th|+7/+2|
+7|
+7|
+7|AC bonus +2, Discipline Mastery, Improved Evasion|
15|
8|
4

11th|+8/+3|
+7|
+7|
+7|Greater Ki Focus|
16|
8|
4

12th|+9/+4|
+8|
+8|
+8|AC bonus +3 Ki Focus 4/day|
17|
8|
4

13th|+9/+4|
+8|
+8|
+8| Bide oneís time|
18|
9|
4

14th|+10/+5|
+9|
+9|
+9|Animal Empathy|
19 |
9|
5

15th|+11/+6/+1|
+9|
+9|
+9| Discipline Mastery|
20|
10|
5

16th|+12/+7/+2|
+10|
+10|
+10|AC bonus +4 Ki Focus 5/day|
21|
10|
5

17th|+12/+7/+2|
+10|
+10|
+10||
22|
10|
5

18th|+13/+8/+3|
+11|
+11|
+11|Inexhaustible Ki Focus|
23|
11|
5

19th|+14/+9/+4|
+11|
+11|
+11|Know the End|
24|
11|
5

20th|+15/+10/+5|
+12|
+12|
+12|AC bonus +5, Ki Focus 6/day, Perfect Ki Focus|
25|
12|
6[/table]

Class Features

Weapons and Armor Proficiency: A guru is proficient with all simple weapons and those weapons favored by the guru's Discipline Mastery class feature. A guru is not proficient with any type of armor.

Maneuvers: A guru begins her career with knowledge of six martial maneuvers. The disciplines available to a guru are Desert Wind, Glacial Chill (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?t=48255&highlight=Lesser+Disciplines), Kalediscopic Dream (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?t=86163), Leaping Gale (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?t=48255&highlight=Lesser+Disciplines), Raging Storm (http://www.giantitp.com/forums/showthread.php?t=177063), Shadow Hand, and Stone Dragon.

Once a guru knows a maneuver, she must ready it before she can use it. A maneuver usable by the guru is considered an extraordinary ability unless otherwise noted in the description. A guru's maneuvers are not affected by spell resistance, and she does not provoke attacks of opportunity when she initiates one, unless part of the maneuver is an attack action that would do otherwise.

A guru learns additional maneuvers at higher levels, as shown on the table above. She must meet a maneuver's prerequisite to learn it. See Table 3-1, page 39 of Tome of Battle: The Book of Nine Swords, to determine the highest-level maneuvers the guru can learn.

Upon reaching 4th level, and every even-numbered guru level after that, a guru can choose to learn a new maneuver in place of one she already knows. In effect, she loses the old maneuver in exchange for the new one. She can choose a new maneuver of any level the guru likes, as long as she observes her restriction on the highest-level maneuvers she may know; a guru need not replace the old maneuver with a maneuver of the same level. She can swap only a single maneuver at any given level.

Maneuvers Readied: A guru can ready four of the six maneuvers she knows at 1st level, and as she advances in level and learn more maneuvers, she must choose which maneuvers to ready. The guru readies her maneuvers by meditating for 5 minutes. The maneuvers she chooses remain readied until she decides to meditate again and change them. A guru need not sleep or rest for any long period of time to ready her maneuvers; any time she spends 5 minutes in meditation, she can change her readied maneuvers.
A guru begins an encounter with all her readied maneuvers un-expended, regardless of how many times she might have already used them since she chose them. When a guru initiates a maneuver, she expends it for the current encounter, so each of her readied maneuvers can be used once per encounter (until she recovers them, as described below).

Once every five rounds, if the guru dropped an enemy below 0 hit points during those rounds, she regains all of her expended maneuvers as if she had meditated for five minutes by spending a move action to quickly center herself in the turmoil of battle.

Stances Known: A guru begins play with knowledge of one 1st-level stance from any discipline open to gurus. At 2nd, 5th, 9th, 14th, and 20th level, she can choose additional stances. Unlike maneuvers, stances are not expended, and she does not have to ready them., All the stances a guru knows are available to her at all times, and she can change the stance she is currently using as a swift action. A stance is an extraordinary ability unless otherwise stated in the stance description.

Unlike maneuvers, a guru cannot learn a new stance at higher levels in place of one she already know.

AC bonus: When unarmored and unencumbered, the guru adds her Wisdom bonus (if any) to herr AC. In addition, she gains a +1 bonus to AC at 4th level. This bonus increases by 1 for every four guru levels thereafter (+2 at 8th, +3 at 12th, +4 at 16th, and +5 at 20th level). These bonuses to AC apply even against touch attacks or when the guru is flat-footed. She loses these bonuses when she is immobilized or helpless, when the guru wears any armor, when she carries a shield, or when she carries a medium or heavy load.

If the guru multi-classes into another class that grants an AC bonus similar to the monkís AC bonus then she does not add her Wisdom to her AC twice, but the un-typed bonuses will stack.

Ki Focus (Ex): At 1st level, a guru can perceive the world around him with a sharpened sense of reality. In a state of ki focus the entire world seems to slow to a crawl while new insight burst forth in the userís mind. A guru temporarily gains a +4 bonus to Dexterity, a +4 bonus to Wisdom, and a +1 insight bonus to saves. While in a state of ki focus a guru cannot fly into a rage or become berserk, since the finely tuned state of mind needed for ki focus is counter productive to the emotion-fueled rush needed for rage abilities. A state of ki focus lasts for a number of rounds equal to 3 + the characterís (newly improved) Wisdom modifier. A guru may prematurely end her state of awareness. At the end of the ki focus, the guru loses the ability and save modifiers and becomes exhausted (-6 penalty to Strength, -6 penalty to Dexterity, can only move at half speed) for the duration of the current encounter (unless she is a 17th-level guru, at which point this limitation no longer applies).

A guru can fall into a state of ki focus only once per encounter. At 1st level she can use her ki focus ability once per day. At 4th level and every four levels thereafter, she can use it one additional time per day (to a maximum of six times per day at 20th level). Entering a state of ki focus takes no time itself, but a guru can do it only during her action, not in response to someone elseís action.

Evasion (Ex): At 2nd level and higher, a guru can avoid even magical and unusual attacks with great agility and acts of acrobatics. If she makes a successful Reflex saving throw against an attack that normally deals half damage on a successful save, she instead takes no damage. Evasion can be used only if the guru is wearing or no armor. A helpless guru does not gain the benefit of evasion.

Purity of Body (Ex): The training to become a guru is intense and difficult, but makes the guru's body resistant to ravages from nature. At 3rd level, a guru gains immunity to all diseases except for supernatural and magical diseases.

Discipline Mastery: At 5th, 10th, and 15th level the guru may choose one discipline that she knows at least two strikes from. The guru becomes proficient with all of the weapons associated with that discipline and she gains a +2 insight bonus to hit when initiating a maneuver from that discipline that requires an attack roll. The DCís for any maneuver from a mastered discipline increases by 2. If the skill associated with a mastered discipline is a physical one then the guru may apply her Wisdom modifier to it in place of Strength, Dexterity, or Constitution.

Empathy (Ex): At 7th level, the guru has a knack for being sensitive to the feelings and thoughts of others without having those feelings and thoughts communicated in any objectively explicit manner. This innate talent provides a bonus on checks involving interaction skills (Bluff, Diplomacy, Handle Animal, Intimidate, Perform, and Sense Motive), provided the guru spends at least 1 minute observing his or her target prior to making the skill check. The bonus is equal to half of the character's levels in guru.

Mettle (Ex): At 8th level and higher, a guru has trained herself to resist harmful attacks on her body and her mind through grueling acts of training and meditation to fortify her being. If she makes a successful Will or Fortitude save against an attack that would normally have a lesser effect on a successful save (such as any spell with a saving throw entry of Will partial or Fortitude partial), she instead completely negates the effect. An unconscious or sleeping guru gains no benefit from this ability.

Diamond Soul (Ex): Just as with the ravages of disease, a guru's insightful meditations lead to a resilience to toxins and poisons, both natural and man-made. At 11th level, a guru gains immunity to poisons of all kinds.

Improved Evasion (Ex): At 10th level, a guru no longer fears the breath of a mighty dragon or explosive spells of a wizard. This ability works like evasion, except that while the guru still takes no damage on a successful Reflex saving throw against attacks henceforth she takes only half damage on a failed save. A helpless guru does not gain the benefit of improved evasion.

Greater Ki Focus (Ex): At 11th level, the bonuses the guru gets from entering into her ki focus increase. The bonus to Wisdom and Dexterity increase to +6 and the insight bonus to saves increases to +2.

Bide oneís time (Su): At 13th level, the guru gains the ability to forfeit her offensive power in favor of a better defense. By sacrificing one of her attacks in the next round she gains an additional immediate action that may only be spent on a counter maneuver in the current round. She may sacrifice more then one attack to gain more immediate actions, but only up to her maximum number of attacks in a round. However, even one attack forfeited in this manner removes the ability to perform a martial strike in the next round if it takes a standard action or full-round action to perform.

Animal Empathy (Ex): At 14th level, a guru can improve the attitude of an animal. This ability functions just like a Diplomacy check made to improve the attitude of a person. The guru rolls 1d20 and adds her yogi level and her Charisma modifier to determine the wild empathy check result. The typical domestic animal has a starting attitude of indifferent, while wild animals are usually unfriendly.

To use wild empathy, the guru and the animal must be able to study each other, which means that they must be within 30 feet of one another under normal conditions. Generally, influencing an animal in this way takes 1 minute but, as with influencing people, it might take more or less time. A guru can also use this ability to influence a magical beast with an Intelligence score of 1 or 2, but she takes a -4 penalty on the check.

Know the End (Ex): At 19th level, the guru becomes intimately familiar with her own body and has discovered the secrets behind longevity through her meditations. Add one-half the maximum result of your raceís maximum age modifier to your normal middle age, old, and venerable age categories. Calculate your maximum age using the new venerable number. In addition to extending the your life-span, the guru will know when the end of her natural life span is approaching a week ahead of time. A guru who is close to dying of old age normally uses this week to set their life in order or to find a successor, others see it as a chance to find a final blaze of glory to die in rather then to slip gently into death's embrace.

Inexhaustible Ki Focus At 18th level, a guru no longer becomes exhausted when leaving his ki focus state.

Perfect Ki Focus (Ex): At 20th level, the guru's ki focus becomes the stuff of legends as the swiftest arrows and lightening cut of swords seems to slow to the crawl of a snail. The bonus to her Dexterity and Wisdom during ki focus increase to +8, while the insight bonus to saves increases to +3.
______________________________

I posted this class once before, but didn't get any comments on it one way or the other. Now that I'm working on a ToB/wuxia setting though, I figure I should repost this class again on a second try for comments. I've changed some things here and there and added some primarily fluff-inclined abilities to fill out dead levels. What I'm mostly concerned about is balance, more then anything else, or ways to fine tune the abilities. The general idea was a class of martial adept that had nigh-mystical abilities with seeming impervious to saving-throw-needing-effects but was frail off body. The sensei arch-type in other words. And yes, I realize it has many home-brewed disciplines attached to it.

Mulletmanalive
2011-06-28, 05:26 PM
I feel compelled [as the linguistics studying smartypants that i am] that "Yoga" literally means "to yoke/the act of yoking" as in affixing cattle to a plow. "Yogi" therefore is the masculine form of "one who yokes/binds together."

I bring this up mostly because you lack Setting Sun [the grappling and tripping discipline] in your lineup and Shadow Hand does no fit that asthetic very well. Yes, i know it's one of the best disciplines, that doesn't mean everything should have it.

Callos_DeTerran
2011-06-28, 06:53 PM
I feel compelled [as the linguistics studying smartypants that i am] that "Yoga" literally means "to yoke/the act of yoking" as in affixing cattle to a plow. "Yogi" therefore is the masculine form of "one who yokes/binds together."

I bring this up mostly because you lack Setting Sun [the grappling and tripping discipline] in your lineup and Shadow Hand does no fit that asthetic very well. Yes, i know it's one of the best disciplines, that doesn't mean everything should have it.

It was a toss-up between including Shadow Hand or Setting Sun (I really like Setting Sun after all), but at the end of the day the yogi is all about the supernatural disciplines, barring Stone Dragon which every class I've seen has had access to. My descision was less 'give it Shadow Hand because it's a good discipline' but rather 'give it Shadow Hand because it's another supernatural discipline that fits the idea of the class'. The yogi, in the setting I'm working on, is one of the most blatantly supernatural classes allowed so Shadow Hand was put in instead of Setting Sun.

Other people using the class are of course free to change that around if they think Setting Sun fits better.

On your other criticism, on the linguistics side, ehhhh, I went off someone else's info when I named the class 'yogi'. In hindsight, I probably change it to guru.

DracoDei
2011-06-28, 07:10 PM
I would strongly consider reducing it to every 4 rounds that they can reset. As it is, if they take 4 strikes they still miss out on a round of using a maneuver every 5... wait... that is actually better than the baseline warblade (although I have heard claims that warblades can initiate every round without limit somehow... dunno how that is supposed to work).

deuxhero
2011-06-28, 07:48 PM
Am I the only one expecting Picnic Baskets?

Terazul
2011-07-03, 04:01 AM
Unfortunately it's a little late for me so I can't offer any real critique, but aside from several instances of "yogi" to be replaced with "guru", only one thing really sticks out:

At level 1 the table shows they gain Improved Unarmed Strike, but this is never actually clarified anywhere in the text; do they gain the feat and that's all? Does it function as the monks?

Cieyrin
2011-07-03, 06:55 PM
This is interesting, a closer relation to the monk than the swordsage is, with a little bit of Sohei thrown in. Much of my critique thoughts Terazul has already said but I do have a couple things to point out on my own.

The first is with the starting age, as I'm unsure how it's supposed to work with multiclassing, as what if you want to multiclass into Guru? I don't think you suddenly will have enlightenment by any means, so I'm not sure how you're intending it to work in that respect.

Another thing is what you could fill 17th level's deadness with: Improved Mettle. They get both versions of Evasion natively, so why not? Physical purity in all things, I say.

If Improved Unarmed Strike is something that was meant to be removed, perhaps another instance of Discipline Mastery could be put in at 1st level, to show their initial spark of enlightenment, plus giving them proficiency with at least one set of discipline weapons if they want to focus on a specific discipline form the get-go.

Since they use the Swordsage chasis of manuever advancement, would they also have access to Extra Readied Manuever?

Finally, are they disallowed from just Rage and Frenzy while Ki Focused? There are others, like Wilder's Surging Euphoria and Wild Runner's Primal Scream. I think that out of any of them, the Dreamtouched State (from Secrets of Sarlona) meshes really well with Ki Focus, though I understand if you want it exclusive. Should that be the case, I would addend the statement about Ki Focus's interaction to say Rage, Frenzy and other mental state abilities.

It's definitely an interesting class, just a bit rough yet. With a little polish, it'll be all the better. Them's my 2 copper. Take as you will.

Callos_DeTerran
2011-07-03, 07:25 PM
The first is with the starting age, as I'm unsure how it's supposed to work with multiclassing, as what if you want to multiclass into Guru? I don't think you suddenly will have enlightenment by any means, so I'm not sure how you're intending it to work in that respect.

The starting age is mostly just fluff. One could start off at a young age and the class would represent that character's progress towards enlightenment and what not, or they could begin with an older guru to represent someone who's been trying to attain serenity for a long time. It'd work the same with multi-classing I'd imagine, a character beginning to try to attain enlightenment.


If Improved Unarmed Strike is something that was meant to be removed, perhaps another instance of Discipline Mastery could be put in at 1st level, to show their initial spark of enlightenment, plus giving them proficiency with at least one set of discipline weapons if they want to focus on a specific discipline form the get-go.

Actually I meant it to be a bonus feat and, in hindsight, to have Superior Unarmed Strike given at a later level. Forgot to put it in though.


Finally, are they disallowed from just Rage and Frenzy while Ki Focused? There are others, like Wilder's Surging Euphoria and Wild Runner's Primal Scream. I think that out of any of them, the Dreamtouched State (from Secrets of Sarlona) meshes really well with Ki Focus, though I understand if you want it exclusive. Should that be the case, I would addend the statement about Ki Focus's interaction to say Rage, Frenzy and other mental state abilities.

It's definitely an interesting class, just a bit rough yet. With a little polish, it'll be all the better. Them's my 2 copper. Take as you will.[/QUOTE]

Hmm, I should change it so that it excludes any intensely emotional state, which was the intention but I could only think of rage at the time.