View Full Version : The Cui Shi (New Class)

2009-02-07, 03:40 AM
I was going for something Samurai equivalent and would like for people to take a look and give thoughts and opinions. I will be playtesting this class in an upcoming game of mine.

Because I could not get the html to work well, you can also view this on the web. (http://www.gathis.com/PHP-Nuke-7.5/html/modules.php?name=Encyclopedia&op=content&tid=3412)

Known for their spiritual training, Cui Shi (kwee shee) are trained in remote monasteries in Uporia. These monasteries are primarily in hidden locations within Shiandispar provinces where these warriors of harmony originate from. It is said the monasteries of the Cui Shi are where Essence Worship was first founded years ago. The location of these monasteries is hidden unless a cui shi escorts a new member to it or if destiny leads a would be warrior to such a place. The Cui Shi are formidable foes with tenacious resolve and a higher connection to the elements.

<b>Adventures:</b> Cui Shi take quests based on how the spirit moves them. They will not undertake a task in which they do not believe and will always seek challenges that ensure the element they are most connected to is protected.

<b>Characteristics:</b> Cui Shi are trained to wield a katana (masterwork bastard sword) and Wakizashi (masterwork short sword) simultaneously. The stronger their connection to the elements, the greater their ability to wield their weapons.The Cui Shi seek elemental harmony in all things.

<b>Alignment:</b> Strongly connected to Essence Worship, or the worship of the elements, Cui

Shi tend to see the best in all things. They understand that some things are not meant to be known while others fall into a strict natural order. The study of essence worship can provide a wide outlook of philosophy. Cui Shi can be of any alignment except evil. Those with a darker understanding of the world cast a blind eye to essence and the value of the elements, the power behind living things.

<b>Religion:</b> Cui Shi follow the ways of Essence Worship, a belief that the world we live in is alive, and all living things on the planet receives its energy from the world. The Shiam believe in all things being made up of four essential forms of matter, Fire, Water, Earth and Air. These are governed by the Four Keepers of Essence, deities that have total control and mastery over their respective elements. All levels of Essence must remain in balance or chaos and destruction will reign over the world.

<b>Background:</b> Cui Shi come form all walks of life. Some disciples are hand picked by other Cui Shi and persuaded or intrigued to study at hidden monasteries while others journey into the wilderness to find themselves, happening upon such a monastery. Such a journey is called <i>Zheng Cheng</i>. Training as a Cui Shi can initially take a few months or years depending on on how long it takes for a student to cleanse the soul. A great deal of harmony is required to properly focus the elements into a fighting form.

<b>Races:</b> Most races have had members who have found the way of the elements. Essence Worship is less about the vessel and more about the fuel that drives it through the water. Proper insight is needed to reach harmony. Certain races might provide cultures that enrich these thoughts such as the natural races (Eiyrie, Flinds and Shajari) but members of all races are capable of reaching harmony.

<b>Other Classes:</b> Cui Shi respect other warriors (Duelist, Fighters, Reavers) but get along best with Rangers whom they regard as much like themselves. They have an equal kind of respect for druids. They hold clerics and paladins in their own regard except that they have a rigid mindset that prevents them from finding harmony. Monks are seen as near equals while rogues are seen as lost souls in search of worldly things of no value to the soul. Cui Shi see Academic Mages as gifted but being on the wrong path while Elementalists are viewed as sagely scholars.

<b>Role:</b> Wielding dual blades, Cui Shi are ideal front line combatants. Cui Shi training revolves around religion as well as etiquette. These warriors have a high resolve and make good leaders.
<font size=10><b>GAME RULE INFORMATION</b></font>
Cui Shi have the following game Statistics.
<b>Abilities:</b> Strength is important to Cui Shi for simple fact of wielding two blades. The rigorous training they undergo brings out their natural strength. Dexterity and Constitution are important to a lesser extant, for simple survival in battle. The most important aspect of a Cui Shi is his wisdom, or his harmony, the connection of his soul to the elements.

<b>Alignment:</b> Any non-evil.
<b>Hit Die</b> d10.


The Cui Shi's class skills (and key ability for each skill) are Concentration (Con), Craft (Int), Diplomacy (Cha), Knowledge (History)(Int), Knowledge (Nature)(Int),Knowledge (Religion)(Int), Ride (Dex), and Sense Motive (Wis).

<b>Skill Points at 1st Level:</b> (2+Int modifier)x4.
<b>Skill Points at Each Additional Level:</b> 2+Int Modifier


All of the following are class features of Cui Shi.

<b>Weapon and Armor Proficiency:</b> A Cui Shi is proficient with all simple and martialweapons and with all types of armor, but not with shields.

<b>Shuang Proficiency (Ex):</b> In melee, the Cui Shi has a mental connection with his two swords, the katana (bastard sword) and the wakizashi (short sword). Cui Shi undergo a ritual called Sheng di which binds their swords to their souls. All Cui Shi are trained in this ritual and should they somehow lose a sword they may perform the same ritual on a masterwork or better sword. The initial swords this ritual is performed on may be of normal craft. Should
the Cui Shi need to change weapons he must take an hour to perform the same rituals on the new weapons after which the ritual on the old weapons is considered removed. This higher connection with his weapons as well the training a Cui Shi receives grants him the Exotic Weapon Proficiency (bastard sword) as a bonus feat. Starting Cui Shi receive a set of masterwork swords from their masters, sometimes after performing a required task to prove their readiness and worth.

<b>Shuang tong Yi (Ex):</b> At 2nd level, a Cui Shi has learned to wield the katana and wakizashi together. He is treated as having the Two weapon Fighting feat when yielding a katana and wakizashi, even if he does not meet the prerequisites of having that feat.

<b>Yi Blade(Ex):</b> Once per day, a Cui Shi of 3rd level or higher can focus his harmony into his weapon, giving it a temporary magical bonus equal to his wisdom modifier for a number of rounds equal to his wisdom modifier. This weapon bonus is considered an enhancement bonus and does not stack with a bonus on an otherwise magical weapon (only the highest applies but a minimum of +1 is stacked with the current magical weapon to represent the Cui Shi's harmonious energy upon the weapon).

Example 1: <i>Guo Tu Ning, a 5th level Cui Shi gets into a fight with 3 soldiers while rescuing an elven Druid being captured by Min's evil forces. He invokes his Katana with his own harmony. He has a wisdom of 17 and his blade is a +1 Katana. His wisdom modifier is a +3, so for three rounds his blade functions as a +3 weapon.</i>

Example 2: <i>Mi Rong Yi, a 9th level Cui Shi fights a hydra. He draws his +3 Katana to fight the beast and invokes it with his harmony. Since his Wisdom is a 15 (+2 modifier) and since his Yi bonus and weapon enhancement bonus to not stack, he still gets an extra magical +1 to his weapon for 2 rounds. His weapon is now a +4 katana for two rounds.</i>

<b>Su Wan (Ex):</b> By 5th level, a Cui Shi has become adept enough to focus his harmony into a fighting technique that focuses on drawing his weapon and striking in a single fluid motion much like a flame ignites or water flash freezes. he is treated as having the Quick Draw feat, but only when he draws his katana or wakizashi.

<b>Soften the Will (Ex):</b> At 6th level a Cui Shi is in touch with himself enough that he can compel the will of his own harmony onto others. He can effectively charm an opponent out of a hostile mood. This is a standard action. The affected person gets a will save vs DC 10+ (1/2 Cui Shi's level)+ (Cui Shi's wisdom modifier). If the attempt to soften the will succeeds
the victim becomes willing to talk before fighting and if it fails the victim is still dead set on fighting. Victims with their will 'softened' may still fight if their lives are threatened or they are coerced or cornered.

<b>Improved Initiative (Ex):</b> At 8th level the Cui Shi has focused his soul enough to sense another's will and anticipate when another enemy will attack. He now has the Improved Initiative Feat.

<b>Mass, Soften the Will (Ex):</b> At 10th level a Cui Shi has improved his connection of his soul with the elements to vex his will on multiple foes. He can 'Soften the Will (as above) on up to 10 targets within 30 feet of himself.

<b>Improved Shuang tong Yi (Ex):</b> At 11th level a Cui shi prowess with his weapons improves. His connection to them as parts of the elements improves. He is treated as having the Improved Two Weapon Fighting feat when yielding the katana and wakizashi, even if he does not meet the prerequisites for the feat.

<b>Improved, Soften the Will (Ex):</b> At 14th level a glance from the eyes of the attuned warrior is enough to show the intensity of his soul and to invoke that essence onto those hostile but weak of heart. The Cui Shi can clam hostile opponents within 30' as a move action and the Dc to do so increases to 11 + (double his wisdom modifier).

<b>Greater Shuang tong Yi (Ex):</b> At 16th level the Cui Shi's connection with his blades as elements is so strong they are as extra limbs upon his body. He is treated as having the Greater Two Weapon Proficiency when wielding a katana and Wakizashi, even if he does not meet the prerequisites for the feat.

<b>Harmonious Presence (Ex):</b> At 20th level the Cui Shi's connection to the elements breaks the molds of reality. Cui Shi are trained to mask this strong bond outside of battle but as soon as his swords are drawn the veil is lifted. Opponents are forced to subject to his will and those within 30 feet must succeed a will save (DC 20 = Cui Shi's wisdom modifier) or be panicked for 4d6 rounds (if they have 4 or fewer HD)or shaken for 4d6 rounds (if they have 5-
19 HD)). Creatures with 20 or more HD are not affected. Any foe that successfully resists the
effect cannot be effected again by the Cui Shi's Harmonious Presence for 24 hours.
<table cellspacing="0" cellpadding="3" class="d20" width="65%" align="center"><tr><td colspan="12" align="center"><h5>Table: The Cui Shi</h5></td></tr><tr class="d20s"><td rowspan="25"></td><td><b>Level</b></td><td><b>Base Attack Bonus</b></td><td><b>Fortitude Save</b></td><td><b>Reflex Save</b></td><td><b>Will Save</b></td><td><b>Special</b></td></tr><tr><td>1<sup>st</sup></td><td>+1</td><td>+2</td><td>+0</td><td>+0</td><td>Shuang Proficiency</td></tr><tr class="d20p"><td>2<sup>nd</sup></td><td>+2</td><td>+3</td><td>+0</td><td>+0</td><td>Shuang tong Yi</td></tr><tr><td>3<sup>rd</sup></td><td>+3</td><td>+3</td><td>+1</td><td>+1</td><td>Yi Blade</td></tr><tr class="d20p"><td>4<sup>th</sup></td><td>+4</td><td>+4</td><td>+1</td><td>+1</td><td>-</td></tr><tr><td>5<sup>th</sup></td><td>+5</td><td>+4</td><td>+1</td><td>+1</td><td>Su Wan</td></tr><tr class="d20p"><td>6<sup>th</sup></td><td>+6/+1</td><td>+5</td><td>+2</td><td>+2</td><td>Soften the Will</td></tr><tr><td>7<sup>th</sup></td><td>+7/+2</td><td>+5</td><td>+2</td><td>+2</td><td>-</td></tr><tr class="d20p"><td>8<sup>th</sup></td><td>+8/+3</td><td>+6</td><td>+2</td><td>+2</td><td>Improved Initiative</td></tr><tr><td>9<sup>th</sup></td><td>+9/+4</td><td>+6</td><td>+3</td><td>+3</td><td>-</td></tr><tr class="d20p"><td>10<sup>th</sup></td><td>+10/+5</td><td>+7</td><td>+3</td><td>+3</td><td>Mass Soften the Will</td></tr><tr><td>11<sup>th</sup></td><td>+11/+6/+1</td><td>+7</td><td>+3</td><td>+3</td><td>Improved Shuang tong Yi</td></tr><tr class="d20p"><td>12<sup>th</sup></td><td>+12/+7/+2</td><td>+8</td><td>+4</td><td>+4</td><td></td></tr><tr><td>13<sup>th</sup></td><td>+13/+8/+3</td><td>+8</td><td>+4</td><td>+4</td><td>-</td></tr><tr class="d20p"><td>14<sup>th</sup></td><td>+14/+9/+4</td><td>+9</td><td>+4</td><td>+4</td><td>Improved Shuang tong Yi</td></tr><tr><td>15<sup>th</sup></td><td>+15/+10/+5</td><td>+9</td><td>+5</td><td>+5</td><td>-</td></tr><tr class="d20p"><td>16<sup>th</sup></td><td>+16/+11/+6/+1</td><td>+10</td><td>+5</td><td>+5</td><td>Greater Shuang tong Yi</td></tr><tr><td>17<sup>th</sup></td><td>+17/+12/+7/+2</td><td>+10</td><td>+5</td><td>+5</td><td>-</td></tr><tr class="d20p"><td>18<sup>th</sup></td><td>+18/+13/+8/+3</td><td>+11</td><td>+6</td><td>+6</td><td>-</td></tr><tr><td>19<sup>th</sup></td><td>+19/+14/+9/+4</td><td>+11</td><td>+6</td><td>+6</td><td>-</td></tr><tr class="d20p"><td>20<sup>th</sup></td><td>+20/+15/+10/+5</td><td>+12</td><td>+6</td><td>+6</td><td>Harmonius Presence</td></tr><tr class="d20s" height="3"><td colspan="12"></td></tr></table>

2009-02-07, 12:23 PM
It still seems a bit weak...
Maybe more skill points and/or class features?

2009-02-07, 01:04 PM
It's very weak, and it doesn't seem to have enough options to really be fun to play over a long period of time.

For the first five levels, you're doing nothing but drawing your weapon, move action to an opponent, and then standard action attack until one of you is dead. Needs more activated abilities.

At level 6-10, you finally gain something else to do, but it's a non-combat ability. If I spent 6 levels playing what sounds like a class geared for combat, in a game (D&D) that is focused so heavily on combat, and the only ability I got was a non-combat ability? I'd be kind of annoyed. Not to say that Soften the Will is bad; just that it needs more activated abilities.

Between levels 11-15, there are three dead levels in which you don't get anything at all. That's even worse than all the tiny passive bonuses. Not to mention that on one of those levels they get Improved Two Weapon Fighting. By that level, they should be getting something like Superior Two Weapon Fighting from the Bloodclaw Master class, which removes all attack penalties for fighting with two weapons.

16-20, three more dead levels, another trivial two-weapon fighting feat, and a capstone that can be mostly replicated by other classes in the mid levels, and has no effect on a very large number of enemies (all undead, constructs, plants, vermin, elementals, and anything else with immunity to fear or mind-affecting effects). Needs more stuff.

Minor access to the Iron Heart and Tiger Claw disciplines would fix most of this. More activated abilities, and a built-in capstone (9th level maneuvers).