PDA

View Full Version : THE COMMANDER [Base class] (PEACH)



DaTedinator
2008-05-27, 12:55 PM
This is the first in what I hope will become a series of projects I refer to as "Bland D&D." The end goal is separate the fluff from the crunch for classes - and maybe some other things, like equipment - so that you can play one class in a thousand different ways.

Take the following class, for instance. Called the Commander, I tried to leave it as bland as possible, so that you could create any number of concepts with it. You could be a Necromancer, creating undead servants; you could be a mercenary captain, leading a small band of soldiers; you could be a classical summoner, binding fiends to perform your will; you could even be a Pokemon trainer, if you really wanted.

And so without further delay, I give you...

THE COMMANDER
Alignment: Any.
Hit Die: d8.

Class Skills
The commander's class skills (and the key ability for each skill) are Appraise (Int), Bluff (Cha), Craft (Int), Diplomacy (Cha), Gather Information (Cha), Handle Animal (Cha), Heal (Wis), Intimidate (Cha), Knowledge (any relating to creature type, chosen individually) (Int), Perform (Cha), Profession (Wis), Ride (Dex), Sense Motive (Wis), Speak Language (n/a), Survival (Wis).
In addition, commanders, being a varied lot, get any four skills as class skills, though these should relate in some way to their types of minions (For example, a mercenary commander could justify Jump and Tumble, but probably not Spellcraft; a necromancer could justify Decipher Script but probably not Open Lock).
Skill Points at 1st Level: (4 + Int modifier) x4.
Skill Points at Each Additional Level: 4 + Int modifier.

{table=head]Level|Base Attack Bonus|Fort Save|Ref Save|Will Save|Special

1st|
+0|
+0|
+0|
+2|Minions, bonus feat

2nd|
+1|
+0|
+0|
+3|Minor aura

3rd|
+2|
+1|
+1|
+3|Minor aura

4th|
+3|
+1|
+1|
+4|Special ability

5th|
+3|
+1|
+1|
+4|General

6th|
+4|
+2|
+2|
+5|Minor aura

7th|
+5|
+2|
+2|
+5|Bonus feat

8th|
+6/+1|
+2|
+2|
+6|Special ability

9th|
+6/+1|
+3|
+3|
+6|Minor aura

10th|
+7/+2|
+3|
+3|
+7|Warlord

11th|
+8/+3|
+3|
+3|
+7|Major aura

12th|
+9/+4|
+4|
+4|
+8|Special ability

13th|
+9/+4|
+4|
+4|
+8|Bonus feat

14th|
+10/+5|
+4|
+4|
+9|Major aura

15th|
+11/+6/+1|
+5|
+5|
+9|Leader

16th|
+12/+7/+2|
+5|
+5|
+10|Special ability

17th|
+12/+7/+2|
+5|
+5|
+10|Major aura

18th|
+13/+8/+3|
+6|
+6|
+11| -

19th|
+14/+9/+4|
+6|
+6|
+11|Bonus feat

20th|
+15/+10/+5|
+6|
+6|
+12|Capstone*[/table]

Class Features
All of the following are class features of the commander.
Weapon and Armor Proficiency: A commander is proficient with all simple weapons, light and medium armor, and light shields.
Minions: A commander's primary ability is that he has minions to command. These come in all shapes, sizes, and forms, but none can be of a CR higher than half the commander's class level (round down, except at first level, where you don't round). The commander can have no more than 1 + 1/5 his class level active at a time (round down), and those active can have a total CR of no higher than his class level + his Charisma modifier. However, this is just the baseline; at first level a commander chooses any of a number of variables as to how he gains his minions, and how he utilizes them.

A note:It's worth noting that the CR system definitely has its oddities and flaws. The DM is encouraged to approve or deny each individual minion before allowing it. He may, instead of simply disallowing a minion, adjust effective CR for means of controlling it, and how many CRs you may have out at a time. He should be especially wary of monsters that are under-CRed (such as True Dragons) or those who are designed to frustrate players (Hyrdras), and shouldn't be afraid to increase their CR by two, three, or even four for extreme cases.

The commander chooses one option from each of the following boxes to determine his use of minions.

Methods of gaining minions
Up-front cost: The commander can spend an amount of gold equal to the potential minion's (CR squared) x 75 GP. Alternately, he can pay (CR squared) x 100, and be able to dismiss the minion and use that money for gaining another minion.

Per-use cost: The commander can spend an amount of gold equal to the potential minion's (CR squared) x 10 gp to gain a minion, and half that every day the minion is summoned.

Defeat: The commander must defeat any potential minion in combat in order to gain it as a minion. The combat does not need to be personal (i.e., one-on-one).

Hybrid: The commander must get any potential minion to beneath 50% HP, at which point he may pay half the up-front cost to force the potential minion to make a Will save (DC 10 + 1/2 commander level + commander's Charisma modifier), with a -2 penalty for every 10% beneath 50% HP he is, or become the commander's minion.

Methods of summoning minions/interactivity of summoning
Full-round action: If the summoning takes a full-round action, the minion requires orders as a move action in order to perform any combat actions (they cannot, or do not, act of their own volition). If the minion has an Intelligence of at least 3 then they'll perform actions in order to further their own survival, but this usually involves fleeing from a source of damage, rather than attacking. The minion can remain for a maximum of one round per class level after orders cease, though it will not leave in the middle of an encounter. A part of the summoning includes giving orders, and the minion may act on its first round of being summoned.

One minute: If the summoning takes one minute (ten full-round actions) to perform, the minion can follow direct orders by the commander to the best of its ability, but can do nothing else (so for example, an Owlbear minion could be ordered to guard a door, but would do nothing to stop intruders from entering through a window that's next to the door, nor would it pursue potential intruders if they cease trying to get through the door). They will perform actions in order to further their own survival, which can include attacking. The minion can remain active for a maximum of ten minutes per class level after orders cease, though it will not leave in the middle of an encounter.

One hour: If the summoning takes an hour to perform, the minion will follow orders to the best of its ability, and will use its intelligence to best pursue the full intent of the orders (so for example, a Djinni told to protect a building would not only attack attempted intruders, but assuming the orders are long-term, would roam among the area, convincing the populace that the building is haunted so that everyone stays away); however, they are still limited by the actual orders (so if the Djinni was told to keep people away because you thought an ancient artifact was in the house, but the Djinni discovers it's really in the house next door, he would still protect the house he was ordered to guard, instead of the one with the artifact). The minion can remain active for a maximum of one day per class level.

One day: If the summoning takes a day to perform (eight hours to actually perform, and sixteen more hours until the minion appears), the minion is a completely intelligent and free-thinking being that will do whatever the commander tells it to do, to the best of its ability, including adapting to a situation that changes without the commander's knowledge (if you allow it; for beings of lower intelligence or in a situation you deem it necessary, you may order the minion to behave as intelligently as those who take an hour to summon). The minion can remain active indefinitely.

Customization
In addition to the previous boxes, a commander may choose any of the options from the following:
Templated minions: The commander chooses one template per point of Intelligence bonus (minimum 1); one template can (and must) be applied to every minion the commander gains. The CR of the minion + template naturally cannot exceed any CR limits; if it does, the minion is still owned by the commander, but is unsummonable until he may call a minion of that CR. Any template added must increase the CR by at least +1.

Unruly minions: The commander has incomplete control over his minions, who will actively try to manipulate his orders to the best of their intelligence, following any orders more literally than looking for the spirit of the order (except, of course, when doing things the other way around is more amenable to the minion). If a player proves far more inept at wording orders than his character should be, and his summonings take longer than a full-round action, he may instead make an opposed Intelligence check with the minion to make it follow an order (the DM is encouraged to have the minon's amount of behavior or misbehavior fit the gravity with which the player succeeds or fails a check). However, the Minion class feature adds half of the commander's character level to his effective class level for determining CR limits and maximum allowed minions and the like.

Bonus feat: At first level and every six levels thereafter, the commander gains a bonus General feat that has no prerequisites other than ability scores and other feats that heís chosen as a bonus feat for this class. Any minion he summons gets these feats as bonus feats, as long as they meet the ability score prerequisites.

Minor Aura (Su): At each of the levels listed, the commander gains a minor aura that grants various benefits to him and to any minion within 10 feet per point of Charisma bonus. The commander may only have one minor aura active at a time, and activating or switching auras is a swift action. Each time the commander gains a minor aura, he chooses two of the following benefits for it to have:

Accurate: Grants a bonus on ranged attack rolls equal to 1, +1 per two points of the commander's Charisma bonus.

Athletic: Grants a bonus on all physical ability and skill checks equal to the commander's Charisma bonus.

Brutal: Grants a bonus on melee attack rolls equal to 1, +1 per two points of the commander's Charisma bonus.

Energy resistance: Grants resistance against any two energy types, equal to the commander's Charisma bonus. May be chosen twice, either granting resistance against different energy types than the previous time, or doubling the bonus.

Focused: Grants a bonus to saves equal to the commander's Charisma bonus.

Pernicious: Grants a bonus to caster level checks to bypass SR equal to the commander's Charisma bonus.

Resistant: Grants a bonus to existing SR equal to 1, +1 per two points of the commander's Charisma bonus.

Skilled: Grants a bonus to bull rush, disarm, feint, and grapple checks equal to the commander's Charisma bonus.

Tough hide: Grants a +1 enhancement bonus to Natural Armor per two points of the commander's Charisma bonus (minimum +1).

Vicious: Grants a bonus to damage equal to the commander's Charisma bonus.

Special Ability: At the listed levels, the commander chooses one ability from the following list:

Double command: If the commander summons his minions as a full-round action, he may give two creatures a command, or one creature two consecutive commands, as a Standard action; giving two minions the exact same order [for example, ďCome back!Ē) takes only a move action.

Fast summoning: The commander may summon a minion in half the normal time (if he summons as a full-round action, he can summon a minion as a standard action).

Lieutenant: One of the commanderís minions becomes his lieutenant, who may be summoned one step faster or stay for one step longer, and has the intelligence of one step higher (if summons already take a day, the lieutenant retroactively gains skills as though his intelligence were two points higher). In addition, the lieutenant is able to give orders to minions for the commander. The commander may change his lieutenant as he wishes, but it takes 24 hours for it to take effect (and until then he has no lieutenant).

Lasting summons: The commanderís summons stay one step longer (i.e., if his summons take a minute, they stay as though he takes an hour). Their intelligence stays the same.

Smart summons: The commanderís summons have the intelligence as though heíd taken one step longer to summon them.

Team player: Any minor aura the commander has active affects any ally within range, at half any numerical benefit.

Telepathy: The commander may speak telepathically with any minion within 100 feet, even if they're on a conjoined plane (so a commander on the Material plane can give an order to an Ethereal Marauder minion who's on the Ethereal plane).

General: The range of the commanderís aura doubles.

Warlord: The commander gains a +1 morale bonus to saves and AC for every minion thatís within 20 feet, and any minion within that range gains half the bonus.

Major aura: At the levels listed, the commander gains a powerful aura that functions as the minor aura (and he may still only have one aura active at a time), except that he chooses two effects from the following list (unless otherwise noted, each option may only be chosen once):

Duck and Cover: Grants Evasion and Improved Uncanny Dodge. If chosen twice, grants Improved Evasion.

Elemental Armor: Grants immunity to one element, chosen when projecting the aura.

Elemental Fury: Grants +1d6 bonus acid, cold, electricity, or fire (chosen when projecting aura) damage on any non-touch attack.

Ferocity: Grants +4 to Strength and Dexterity whenever below 25% HP (round up).

Frenzied Attack: Grants a bonus attack whenever taking an attack, at full attack bonus Ė5.

Martial Skill: Grants the benefit of any first or second level Martial Stance.

Tenacious: Grants Mettle. If chosen twice, grants Improved Mettle.

Trollskin: Grants Fast Healing equal to half the commanderís Charisma bonus whenever below half HP, and half that whenever above half HP.

Alternatively, the commander may give up one selection on the Major Aura list for two from the Minor Aura list.

Leader: Any minion gains a +2 bonus to attack and damage against any opponent who has dealt the commander damage in this combat.

Capstone: In development.

-----

There you have it! Obviously not completely finished; I'm trying to come up with a good capstone ability (any ideas? I'm up for suggestions), and it'd be nice to just give something small for that one dead level.

So! Thoughts?

DaTedinator
2008-05-27, 12:56 PM
Reserved for sample commanders.

lord of kobolds
2008-05-28, 07:30 AM
Try checking the guide to homebrewing for format.

BRC
2008-05-28, 08:52 AM
Havn't read it through, but it sounds a good deal like a Marshal with leadership.