View Full Version : Martial Artist

2008-04-01, 03:17 PM
Comments? Suggestions?

Martial Artist
HD: d10
Skills: 4 +Int
Class Skills: Balance, Climb, Craft (any), Escape Artist, Hide, Intimidate, Jump, Listen, Move Silently, Perform (dance, percussion instrument, sing, string instrument, or wind instrument), Profession (any), Sense Motive, Spot, Swim.
Level | BAB | Fort | Ref | Will | Special | Unarmed | Unarmored
1st | +1 | +2 | +2 | +0 | Unarmed strike, unarmored stance, 1st discipline (1st ability) | +1 | +1
2nd | +2 | +3 | +3 | +0 | Evasion| +1 | +1
3rd | +3 | +3 | +3 | +1 | Uncanny dodge, 1st discipline (2nd ability)| +1 | +1
4th | +4 | +4 | +4 | +1 | Ki strike, ki dodge| +1 | +1
5th | +5 | +4 | +4 | +1 | 1st discipline (3rd ability)| +2 | +2
6th | +6 | +5 | +5 | +2 | 2nd discipline (1st ability)| +2 | +2
7th | +7 | +5 | +5 | +2 | Improved evasion| +2 | +2
8th | +8 | +6 | +6 | +2 | Improved uncanny dodge, 2nd discipline (2nd ability)| +2 | +2
9th | +9 | +6 | +6 | +3 | Adamantine strike| +3 | +3
10th | +10 | +7 | +7 | +3 | 2nd discipline (2nd ability)| +3 | +3
11th | +11 | +7 | +7 | +3 | 3rd discipline (1st ability)| +3 | +3
12th | +12 | +8 | +8 | +4 | - | +3 | +3
13th | +13 | +8 | +8 | +4 | 3rd discipline (2nd ability)| +4 | +4
14th | +14 | +9 | +9 | +4 | - | +4 | +4
15th | +15 | +9 | +9 | +5 | 3rd discipline (3rd ability)| +4 | +4
16th | +16 | +10 | +9 | +5 | 4th discipline (1st ability)| +4 | +4
17th | +17 | +10 | +9 | +5 | - | +5 | +5
18th | +18 | +11 | +9 | +6 | 4th disicpline (2nd ability)| +5 | +5
19th | +19 | +11 | +9 | +6 | - | +5 | +5
20th | +20 | +12 | +12 | +6 | Perfect self, 4th discipline (3rd ability)| +5 | +5
Proficiencies: As a normal monk.
Unarmed strike: Character gains Improved Unarmed Strike and a +1 bonus to attack and damage rolls made with unarmed strikes. This bonus increases according to the table.
Unarmored stance: Character gains a +1 dodge bonus to AC and adds their Wisdom modifier as an insight bonus to their AC. This ability only functions while the character is unarmored and not using a shield or carrying a heavy or heavier load. This bonus increases according to the table.
Ki Strike (Su): At 4th level a martial artist imbues their unarmed strikes with ki treating their unarmed strikes as if they were a manufactured weapon with a +1 enhancement bonus. This improves to +2 at 8th level, +3 at 12th level, +4 at 16th level and +5 at 20th level. This ability does not transfer or stack with any manufactured weapons the martial artist uses.
Ki Dodge (Su): At 4th level a martial artist imbues their body with ki treating their unarmored body as if it were a manufactured armor with a +1 enhancement bonus. This improves to +2 at 8th level, +3 at 12th level, +4 at 16th level and +5 at 20th level. This ability does not function while the martial artist wears armor or uses a shield and does not stack with other enhancement bonuses (such as bracers of armor).
Disciplines: At 1st, 6th, 11th, and 16th level a martial artist selects a discipline. Each discipline grants them an ability upon the level it is selected, another ability two levels later, and a third ability two levels after the second ability. What abilities a martial artist gains depends on the discipline they select. Any feats bestowed by a discipline are gained even if the martial artist does not meet the prerequisites. Below is a list of many disciplines the martial artist can select. Some disciplines have listed prerequisites in their description.

Ape’s Grasp:
-1st ability: Improved Disarm as a bonus feat.
-2nd ability: Improved Grapple as a bonus feat.
-3rd ability: Improved Grab: Once per round if a martial artist hits with a successful unarmed strike, he may attempt to start a grapple as a free action.

Bear’s Claws:
-1st ability: Weapon Focus (unarmed strike) bonus feat
-2nd ability: Weapon Specialization (unarmed strike) bonus feat
-3rd ability: Improved Critical (unarmed strike) bonus feat

Eagle’s Eyes:
-1st ability: Point Blank Shot
-2nd ability: +4 bonus to Spot
-3rd ability: Far Shot

Fish’s Scales:
-1st ability: Hold Breath x2 and +4 bonus to Swim
-2nd ability: Hold Breath x4 and +6 bonus to Swim
-3rd ability: Hold Breath x6 and +8 bonus to Swim and ability to take 10 with Swim even when threatened or endangered

Frog Tongue:
-1st ability: Quickdraw bonus feat
-2nd ability: Grenadier bonus feat
-3rd ability: Dead Aim bonus feat

Iron Fist:
-1st ability: Damage with unarmed strike improves by one dice size (1d6)
-2nd ability: Repeat/stack 1st ability (1d8)
-3rd ability: Repeat/stack 1st ability (1d10)

Iron Body:
-1st ability: Damage reduction 1/-
-2nd ability: Damage reduction 2/-
-3rd ability: Damage reduction 3/-

Lion's Heart:
-1st ability: +4 to saves vs. fear, +4 Intimidate
-2nd ability: Immunity to fear
-3rd ability: Lion's roar: A number of times per day equal to 3 + Charisma modifier the martial artist can roar and cause all creatures within 25ft.+5ft. per class level to be affected by the cause fear spell regardless of their hit dice. Will save DC10 + 1/2 class level + charisma modifier.

Lizard's Gut:
-1st ability: Faster healing bonus feat
-2nd ability: Wholeness of body (as a Monk)
-3rd ability: Lesser regeneration: Character regenerates lost limbs and body parts. They must heal naturally to do so. If they are healed magically they may intentionally damage themselves and heal naturally in order to trigger this effect.

Mole’s Sight:
-1st ability: Blind-fight bonus feat
-2nd ability: Low-light vision
-3rd ability: Darkvision 60ft.

Monkey’s Tail:
-1st ability: Combat Expertise bonus feat
-2nd ability: Improved Trip
-3rd ability: Improved Disarm

Mystic Meditation (Sp):
This discipline allows the martial artist to meditate (maintaining concentration) for 10 minutes and gain the benefit of any Ranger spell of 1st-level or lower. The martial artist can do this a number of times per day equal to 3 + their Wisdom modifier. At 10th level the martial artist gains the ability to select 2nd-level Ranger spells and at 15th level the martial artist can use 3rd-level Ranger spells and at 20th level the martial artist can use 4th-level Ranger spells. Unlike other disciplines, its benefits are set to specific levels of martial artist regardless when it is selected.

Owl's Wisdom:
-1st ability: +4 Spot checks
-2nd ability: Low-light vision
-3rd ability: Clairvoyance as a spell-like ability. Class level = caster level. Useable a number of times per day equal to 3 + Wisdom modifier. DC is Wisdom-based.

Shrew’s Flurry:
-1st ability: Two-weapon fighting bonus feat
-2nd ability: Improved Two-weapon fighting bonus feat
-3rd ability: Greater Two-weapon fighting bonus feat

Wolf’s Wile:
-1st ability: Add Handle Animal, Knowledge (nature), Knowledge (geography), and Survival to their class skills.
-2nd ability: Track bonus feat
-3rd ability: Scent 30 ft.

Wolverine’s Fury:
-1st ability: Rage 1/day (as a 1st level barbarian)
-2nd ability: Rage 2/day
-3rd ability: Rage 3/day

Boar Stance:
-1st ability: +4 bonus to saves made against poison and disease
-2nd ability: Immunity to diseases
-3rd ability: Wholeness of Body (as a Monk except the character must eat food as a move action each time they attempt to use the ability)

Dog Stance:
-1st ability: +4 bonus to resist all compulsion and fear effects
-2nd ability: Immunity to fear
-3rd ability: Aura of Courage (as a Paladin)

Dragon Stance:
-1st ability: +1 bonus to natural armor
-2nd ability: Fire resistance equal to martial artist level
-3rd ability: Burning hands as a spell-like ability, uses per day equal to 3 + Charisma modifier, caster level is equal to martial artist level, DC to resist this is 10 + ½ class level + Cha mod

Horse Stance:
-1st ability: Base speed increases by 10 feet
-2nd ability: Run bonus feat
-3rd ability: Base speed increases by another 10 feet

Monkey Stance:
-1st ability: Deflect Arrows bonus feat
-2nd ability: Snatch Arrows bonus feat
-3rd ability: Improved Deflection: The character can now deflect a number of arrows per round equal to their Dexterity modifier (minimum 1)

Ox Stance:
-1st ability: Natural Heavyweight bonus feat
-2nd ability: Improved Grapple bonus feat
-3rd ability: Powerful Build

Rabbit Stance:
-1st ability: +4 bonus to Jump checks
-2nd ability: Fleet of Foot bonus feat
-3rd ability: Great Leap: Character takes no penalties to Jump checks when not gaining a running head start and when they do get a running head start they gain a +4 bonus to Jump checks.

Ram Stance:
-1st ability: Power Attack bonus feat
-2nd ability: Improved Bull Rush bonus feat
-3rd ability: Powerful Charge: Character can deal double damage with the first attack of their charge. This works just like a critical hit, but is always treated as a x2 multiplier and affects any target (even those normally immune to critical hits). If the character happens to score a critical hit upon a charge, this ability merely adds +1 to the attack’s critical hit multiplier.

Rat Stance:
-1st ability: Character can use their Dexterity modifier instead of Strength for Climb, Jump and Swim checks.
-2nd ability: Up the Walls bonus feat
-3rd ability: Hide in Plain Sight (as a Ranger)

Rooster Stance:
-1st ability: Slowfall 10 feet per martial artist level
-2nd ability: Character can move at normal speed without penalty while making Balance, Hide, and Move Silently checks.
-3rd ability: Feather fall as a spell-like ability useable at will (self only).

Snake Stance:
-1st ability: Dodge bonus feat
-2nd ability: Mobility bonus feat
-3rd ability: Spring Attack bonus feat

Tiger Stance:
-1st ability: Character gains the ability to deal slashing or piercing damage at their leisure with their unarmed strikes.
-2nd ability: +1 bonus to Balance, Climb, Hide, Jump, and Move Silently
-3rd ability: Pounce: Whenever a character makes a charge attack against a target that is denied their Dexterity modifier to AC, they may make a full-attack. They gain the normal charging benefits only to their first attack roll (including the +2 to attack, leap attack feat, etc.).

2008-05-08, 03:42 PM
I hate to reply to my own post but I was somewhat hoping for feedback on this since it's somewhat excperimental.

2008-05-08, 07:59 PM
i find this to be rather well thought out. its a monk with a high bab. though i would suggest lowering the hd to D8 so it is more balanced. the disciplines are a great idea. they seem to be based off of the Chinese Zodiac. i find this to be very wel lthought out. keep up the good work

P.S. I know how you feel about no one looking at your class. happened to me to.

2008-05-08, 09:11 PM
My ONLY real concern with this is that with Fist of Iron and Improved Natural Attack you have a +4 size boost for damage...for a medium MA you now hit as a, assuming you took this as your first dicipline, a colossal creature. 6d6 damage. At level 5...I'm sorry, that's a bit much I think. By level 20...your doing 12d8, or 8d8 if Improved Natural Attack for some reason won't stack. That's for a medium base creature mind you. If you have a nice cleric or Wizard that can enlarge person on you as well that puts you above colossal size damage...

2008-05-08, 09:16 PM
Hey, 32d8 with the current monk. Requires but one spell, and works with any character small or larger. Highest unassisted unarmed damage I've gotten was 16d8 I believe. Somebody else got to 26d8 I believe (not 128d8 like they'd have you believe).

But I prefer Witch's Martial Artist (in Handy Havesack). There's been a lot of monk fixing many going around today, what up with that? I had to bring out the Martial Artist, what, 6 or so times today.

2008-05-08, 09:27 PM
The "Northern Fist Brawler" is a gimpy take on what should have been a fun alternative to spell slinging and tankish militant bashers. There are tons of us out there that would like for a simple, yet effective alternative. Wire-fu/anime haters are fools for bashing the concept really. The Matrix, anything by Frank Miller, and a good part of how most action is dealt with in movies these days... they all stem from asian (and more specifically anime) roots. It's a natural progression for players to want to have that level of ability in their tabletop experience. Now, I'm not saying everyone does, but that it should be viewed as a legitimate option for those who want it. As the rules currently stand, it isn't even close.

2008-05-08, 10:02 PM
Well, I was hoping for a d10 HD. If I need to balance that I'd probably reconsider another ability. Any ideas?

Ironfist? Well let's see 1d4->1d6->1d8->2d6
That's the progression a medium-sized martial artist should have according to the normal rules of progression. A monk's increased unarmed damage wouldn't stack with this this, but I suppose I should note that.

Thanks for feedback. I'm open to adding more disciplines if any ideas are out there.