View Full Version : [3.5 base class, PEACH]the steel porcupine a.k.a. spiker 2.0

Bergor Terraf
2010-03-04, 04:43 PM
This is my second attempt (first one here, but I warn you, it aint pretty)

It all started when I discovered that armor spikes didn't have a lot of love and thought "let's do something about it"! So I started thinking about things you can do with them and got a class with a focus on mobility, charge and grappling. My first attempt wasn't that thought out and ended up not that great. I wanted to change it but I didn't have the time (read: started playing WoW).

But it never really left my mind and after brewing in my head for a few months, here it is again! There are still a couple of things that will probably change (mainly names of ability), typos should be present and I'm still looking for a better name but the meat should be here.

Steel Porcupine

From the countless martial arts that have been created in the quest to turn the body into an effective weapon, one stands out for its sheer brutality. It wasn't created by some monk in a monastery, but evolved naturally from the fighting style of doormen.

Navigating a crowded tavern gave them great mobility and they had impressive wrestling abilities to restrain "troublesome customers". When some of them became adventurers, they continued to use and improve this style, even teaching it to some, until it became what it is today.

Since the use of armor spikes goes so well with this fighting style, those who use it became known as steel porcupine.

Starting Gold: Same as a Fighter.
Starting Age: Same as a Fighter.

Class Skills
The steel porcupine's class skills (and the key ability for each skill) are Balance (Dex), Climb (Str), Craft (Int), Escape Artist (Dex), Intimidate (Cha), Jump (Str), Listen (Wis), Sense Motive (Wis), Spot (Wis), and Swim (Str), Tumble (Dex).
Skills Per Day at 1st Level : (4 + int)x4
Skills Per Day at Each Additional Level : 4 + int

Hit Dice: d10

Table: The Steel Porcupine
{table=head]Level|Base Attack Bonus|Fort Save|Ref Save|Will Save|Special

+0|Improved spiked strike, wrestler, retaining spikes

+0|Improved mobility 1, armor specialization, running tackle

+1|Spiked grip, bonus feat

+1|Death from above

+1|Iron maiden, improved mobility 2

+2|Charge breaker, bonus feat

+2|Knee strike

+2|Cushion the fall, improved mobility 3

+3|Bear's grasp, improved spiked grip, bonus feat

+3|Momentum, jumpstart

+3|Back breaker, improved mobility 4

+4|Elbow drop, bonus feat

+4|There is no escape

+4|Out of the way!, improved mobility 5

+5|Thorn in the side, bonus feat

+5|Falling hard

+5|Stunning knee strike, improved mobility 6

+6|Improved out of the way, bonus feat

+6|Bloody hug

+6|Head vise, improved mobility 7[/table]

Class Features

All of the following are class features of the steel porcupine.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency: Steel porcupines are proficient with all simple weapons plus armor spikes. They are also proficient with all armor and shields (except tower shields).

Improved Spiked Strike (Ex): A steel porcupine gains the improved unarmed strike feat and can substitute his unarmed damage for his armor spikes damage. He can also use power attack with armor spikes.

One of the bad things the first version did was put a lot of focus on the armor spikes. Problem is, they cost 50 gold, so it's not a given that a level 1 character could start with it. So I made it use unarme damage for soem of it's abilities and made it possible to use is armor spike damage when they have some.

Wrestler (Ex): The steel porcupine gains the improved grapple feat and can use his Dex modifier instead of his Str modifier during a grapple check.

Since the class as a heavy focus on grappling, this was a nobrainer. Also, the Dex or Str to grapple was to make a steel porcupine with light armor and high dex possible.

Retaining Spikes (Ex): When grappling, a steel porcupine uses his unique attributes to make sure escaping him becomes a bloody affair. When an opponent tries to escape a grapple with a steel porcupine by making a grappling or Escape Artist check, they receive damage equal to his armor spike damage whether they escape or not.

Just an exemple of the "what advantage armor spikes can give" train of thought.

Improved Mobility (Ex): The fighting style of a steel porcupine puts a lot of emphasis on movement. As a result, they learn to move efficiently in different ways. At 2nd level, they gain a +5 ft enhancement bonus to their base land speed and a +2 enhancement bonus to their jump, tumble and climb checks. Every third level after that, the speed bonus increases by an additional +5 ft and the bonus to jump, tumble and climb increase by an additional +2.

If deemed too much, I could reduce the frequency of that ability, but since the class doesn't have any magical capacities and is melee-centric, migh has well make him good.

Armor Specialization (Ex): At 2nd level, a Steel Porcupine learns the intricacies of armors of a certain kind and develops special moves when wearing them. They choose between light, medium and heavy armor. This decision cannot be changed later. They gain the appropriate special move.

Light: When an opponent makes an attack against you and miss, you may use one of your attacks of opportunity to deal him damage equal to your unarmed damage.

Medium: If you are flanking an opponent and your flanking partner misses an attack against him, you may use one of your attacks of opportunity to deal him damage equal to your unarmed damage.

Heavy: When an opponent you threaten makes an attack against someone other than you, you may use one of your attacks of opportunity to deal him damage equal to your unarmed damage.

I wanted to make a kind of "improved" version of this, but inspiration wasn't there. If anyone has an idea, i'm listening (reading would be more appropriate, but you get what I mean).

Running Tackle (Ex): When a Steel Porcupine tackles someone, it's more than a little push. At the end of a charge, a 3rd level or higher steel porcupine can make a bull rush attempt. For each 5 ft they move the target, they inflict damage equal to their unarmed damage + ˝ their Str modifier if they wear light armor, their full Str modifier if they wear medium armor or twice their Str modifier if they wear heavy armor.

Spiked Grip (Ex): Steel Porcupine Learn to use their armor spikes to hold on to things. At 3rd level, a steel porcupine gains a climb speed (when wearing spiked armor) equal to half his base land speed (rounded down) and he gains the ability to take 10 on Climb checks, even if stress or distraction would normally prevent him from doing so. He also gains an enhancement bonus to grapple checks equal to 1 + their armor spikes enhancement bonus.

Bonus Feat: Starting at 3rd level and every three levels after, the steel porcupine gains a bonus feat chosen from the fighter bonus feat list. For the purpose of qualifying for those feats, he is considered to have levels in the fighter class equal to his level in steel porcupine – 2.

Can be slowed down if it's too overpowered.

Death From Above (Ex): By jumping down prior to hitting an enemy, the steel porcupine can use gravity itself to inflict greater damage. Right after a falling at least 10ft but before receiving falling damage, if a 4th level steel porcupine is adjacent to an opponent, he can make an attack at his highest attack bonus against him. This attack deals normal damage +1d6 damage for each 10 ft fallen, up to a maximum equal to his class level. This attack cannot be used if the steel porcupine has already used his standard action for the round.

Might seem highly situationnal but some later abilities incrases it's potency.

Iron Maiden (Ex): By completely surrounding their victims with their body, steel porcupines can insure their slow and painful demise. As a full round action that provokes attacks of opportunity, a 5th level steel porcupine can make a grapple check against a pinned opponent. If it's successful, they deal damage as normal and the target starts bleeding, losing 1 HP per round. This bleeding can be stopped with a DC 15 Heal check or any magical healing. Multiple bleeding stacks. The steel porcupine must be wearing armor spikes to use this action.

Charge breaker (Ex): By ignoring common sense and stepping towards a charging opponent instead of away, a steel porcupine can take him by surprise and make him pay is folly. When charged by an opponent, a 6th level steel porcupine can choose to make a Reflex save of 30 (-5 for each 10 feet his opponent traveled). If successful, he moves 5 feet closer to his opponent in the path of his charge and makes an attack against him. His opponent has the -2 AC from the charge. If the attack connects, the opponent loses the benefits of his charge (but can still attack), but still keeps the -2 AC penalty. This counts has an attack of opportunity.

I'll probably change the save for something else.

Knee Strike (Ex): By holding the head of an opponent still for an instant, steel porcupine can introduce it to their knee, an encounter that makes them see stars. A number of times per day equal to half his class level, a steel porcupine of 7th level can make a special grapple check as a full round action that provokes attacks of opportunity. If successful, the steel porcupine deals damage equal to his unarmed damage + Str modifier to his opponent. Then the opponent must make a Fortitude saving throw (DC 10 + ˝ character level + Str modifier + damage dealt) or become dazed for one round. The grapple is broken after that.

Special: The steel porcupine must be able to physically reach the head of his opponent to make a knee strike.

I added the damage dealt to the save because the harder you hit, the harder it is to resist. Is it too much? Should I makeit 1/2 damage instead?

Cushion the Fall (Ex): A steel porcupine learns how to shake off damage from falling, feeling only discomfort after a fall that would be lethal for others. A steel porcupine of 8th level can convert a number of 1d6 falling damage equal to his class level into nonlethal damage.

Now Death From Above is less lethal for you (but not for your victim).

Bear's Grasp (Ex): Steel porcupines become so adept at wrestling that they can successfully grapple with creatures larger than themselves without any trouble. At 9th level a steel porcupine counts has one size category larger for purpose of grappling.

Improved Spiked Grip (Su): The way a steel porcupine can hold on to things with his armor spikes defies all logic. At 9th level, he is treated as if being under the effects of the spider climb spell when wearing armor spikes. His bonus to grapple checks also increases to ˝ class level + the armor spikes enhancement bonus.

Momentum (Ex): Steel porcupines learn how to take advantage of there momentum when charging. At 10th level, a steel porcupine that traveled at least 20 ft before a charge gains a bonus to their damage roll for each 10 ft they traveled in excess of 10 ft. This bonus is equal to their Dex modifier if they wear light armor, Str modifier if they wear heavy armor and their choice between Str and Dex modifier if they wear medium armor. So a steel porcupine in light armor that traveled 35 ft during his charge gains 2 times his Dex modifier as bonus damage. Only an attack made at the end of a charge gets this bonus.

The last close is to stop Momentum from boosting the damage from Running Tackle.

Jumpstart (Ex): A steel porcupine that likes to attack from the air doesn't let gravity do all the work. By making a Jump check from a proper starting point (a ceiling for example), a steel porcupine of 10th level can propel himself downward instead of just letting himself fall. Threat the fall has 10 ft higher than it was for each 5 points by which the check result is higher than 20.

Now Death From Above can be useful even inside a dungeon: use Improved Spiked Grip, climb on the ceiling, jump down, enjoy.

Back Breaker (Ex): Certain steel porcupines tried to flip conventional fighting techniques on its head and, instead of hitting their enemies with their body, they tried to hit their body with their enemies. The results were… interesting.

As a standard action during a grapple, a steel porcupine of 11th level can try to pick up his opponent by making an oppose grapple check. If successful and the steel porcupine is smaller than his opponent, he must make a Str check with a DC of 15 for each size category bigger than him. Success means the steel porcupine is able to lift his opponent and bring him crashing down on himself (habitually the knee, but some have been known to use their shoulders). This deals normal unarmed damage +1d6 per 4 class level. The opponent then becomes prone and the grapple continues.

Elbow Drop (Ex): When a steel porcupine of 12th level uses death from above on a prone opponent, the attack automatically becomes a critical threat. Also, the bonus damage increases to 1d6+2 per 10 ft of fall.

My favorite wrestling move. Had to put it in.

There is no escape (Ex): When using the Iron Maiden, a steel porcupine of 13th level can try to demoralize his opponent with an intimidate check as a free action.

May not be a big ability, but the role playing possibilities just make me grin madly. Just to be sure, the -2 penalty from shaken does get applied to grappling checks, right?

Out of the Way! (Ex): During a charge, a 14th level steel porcupine can make an overrun attempt to pass through a square occupied by an opponent. This works just like a normal overrun, except that upon success, the opponent is also dealt damage equal to the normal unarmed damage of the steel porcupine.

Could use a new name

Thorn in the side (Ex): When trying a grapple against an opponent too large to successfully grapple, a 15th level steel porcupine can instead hold on to him. Upon success, the steel porcupine is considered in a grapple, but not the opponent. The opponent suffers a -1 penalty on attack rolls, saving throws, skill checks and ability checks plus an additional -1 penalty for each 5 points by which he lost the grappling check. This lasts for one round.

On his turn, the opponent can attempt a grapple check has a full round action that provokes attacks of opportunity to try and dislodge the steel porcupine. A success means the steel porcupine falls prone on an adjacent square. Whether he succeeds or not, he receives damage equal to the normal unarmed damage of the steel porcupine.

On his turn, the steel porcupine has two choices: hold on or let go. If he tries to hold on, he then makes another opposed grapple check. If successful, he stays attached to the opponent and recalculates the penalty based on the new grapple check. A failure means the steel porcupines falls down and lands prone on an adjacent square. If he lets go, he land on an adjacent square. If this square is occupied, he lands prone.

The fantasy staple of the hero jumping on the back of a huge monster to distract it, while holding on for dear life.

Falling Hard (Ex): When using death from above, a 16th level steel porcupine deals bonus damage with d8 instead of d6 and is dealt falling damage using d4 instead of d6.

This would really need a new name

Stunning Knee Strike (Ex): the victim of a Knee Strike from a 17th level steel porcupine becomes stunned instead of dazed.

Improved Out of the Way! (Su): When a steel porcupine of 18th level makes a successful overrun attempt by using Out of the way, he may choose to move his opponent to an adjacent square. If an opponent already occupies that square, the steel porcupine may make a free trip attempt against him. If the trip attempt fails, the opponent cannot try to trip the steel porcupine in return.

You know when you see a football game in a cartoon, there's always this scene of the big unstopable player just charging across the field, hitting players in his way and sending the flying right and left without ever slowing down? That's the feeling i'm going for here.

Bloody Hug (Ex): Every time a steel porcupine of 19th level deals damage with his armor spikes during a grapple, they have a 25% chance of dealing 1 point of Con damage.

Head Vise (Ex): Once a day, a 20th level steel porcupine can make a grapple check against a pinned opponent as a full round action that provokes attacks of opportunity. If successful, the opponent is considered to have been under the effect of a critical hit with a vorpal weapon, except the head is crushed instead of cut off.

I thought about using two knee strike attempt for one of these but thought it might be too much. What do you think?

Bergor Terraf
2010-03-08, 01:50 PM
Not even one reply?

Will someone at least say if they like it or not?

2010-03-10, 03:56 PM
Still chewing over this in my head, since these are mostly new allowances for existing (and somewhat useless) abilities, and there's quite a lot of them that go in concert. A lot of good crunch here.
Flavor-wise, I really like the idea you've got here, no matter how the crunch comes out. A 3.5 bouncer or prison guard would make truly excellent use of these options, and that seems to me like a lot of fun. Excellent work.

2010-03-10, 04:20 PM
I don't like the name or the fluff. This is essentially a guy who runs around in armor and punches people. But if you're going to wear heavy metal armor, you're the kind of person who carries around a weapon.

That said, there is just way too much to read here. There are twenty-six class features here!

I'm going to be skimming here:
Retaining Spikes (Ex): What about Freedom of Movement? What constitutes an escape?
Running Tackle (Ex): This could be exploited, but I'm not sure how someone would optimize bull rush at the moment. Probably not well since size matters a lot.
Spiked Grip (Ex): First part is a meaningless fluff ability. Second part is pretty important. But grappling doesn't scale well in the first place, so...
Death From Above (Ex): Jumping from a cliff, letting your wizard buddies drop you from up high, etc.
Iron Maiden (Ex): Most battles take place in less than a minute. This ability is simply an extra 10 damage at most. And most enemies you can pin aren't capable of surviving for more than three in the first place.

Now I've lost interest...

Bergor Terraf
2010-03-12, 03:52 PM
Flavor-wise, I really like the idea you've got here, no matter how the crunch comes out. A 3.5 bouncer or prison guard would make truly excellent use of these options, and that seems to me like a lot of fun. Excellent work.


I don't like the name...

I'd like to change it, but I don't have any ideas right now

This is essentially a guy who runs around in armor and punches people

So is the barbarian, in a way.

For this class, I tried to give it a little wrestling flavor (see death from above, elbow drop, back breaker). So yes, it is essentially a guy running hitting people, but in it's own unique (I hope) way.

That said, there is just way too much to read here. There are twenty-six class features here!

I know this is a lot to take in. However, I don't mind poeple commenting on only a part at a time.

Retaining Spikes (Ex): What about Freedom of Movement? What constitutes an escape?

Only when they make a grapple or escape artist check to escape the grapple (clarified description)

2010-03-12, 03:58 PM
So basically here you have a guy that uses various methods to crush enemies against his spiked armor? Hm... have you considered what this class could do against a Colossal creature with DR or Fast Healing or a high Natural Armor? Cause that's gonna be a problem.

EDIT: As a name, why not call it the Pointed Smasher?