View Full Version : [3.5/PF] Gun Mage, Base Class [WIP, PEACH]

2010-12-12, 01:34 PM

I do not in any way, shape, or form own the Iron Kingdoms Gun Mage. This is a work of homebrew.

The following class is built for balance with guns of approximately 1800's quality; revolvers, lever rifles, trap shotguns. No automatics, and no matchlocks either - the guns are not hellaciously powerful on their own merits but have more oomph than a non-compound bow. This is a significant deviation from the Gun Mage's original roots in the Iron Kingdoms campaign setting.

They are not to the point of ubiquity that most everyone knows how to shoot one - proficiency is either acquired through the Exotic Weapons Proficiency feat, using (subjective) ACFs to trade for it for other base classes (for example, lose shield and heavy armor proficiency), or taking this class. Large weapons such as cannons and mortars are right out, requiring their own special training.

When proficient, the weapons take no additional mechanics to reload/maintain. Reloading always requires a free hand beyond the wielding hand, unless special mitigating factors (hilarious clockwork wrist-mounted reloaders) are in place. Reloading times are somewhere between move actions per shot for single/double shot weapons, such as shotguns, and standard/full-round action reloads for weapons with magazines, such as revolvers or rifles. Feats similar to Rapid Reload exist to improve this feature.

If guns are of inferior quality (chances of failure when using, skill checks to reload, etc.), consider adding in additional class features that mitigate these factors. If guns are of superior quality or ubiquity (modern assault rifles), consider boosting the BAB to Full and scale the abilities to deal with the increase lethality of weapons. If guns are of vastly superior quality (handheld ray guns that blow through solid steel walls) rethink your choice of game system. :smalltongue:

It is possible to adapt the class to use other projectile weapons, such as bows or crossbows.

The Gun Mage


Gun Mages range from stereotypical gunslingers...


... to those of a more... niche profession.

"The giant enemy crab's shell had already proven itself immune to artillery and impervious to most spells, yet with a single pistol shot he dropped the beast. Some claim that it had a weak point and that the story neglects that the crab was flipped over first, but most believe that the forces the man possessed were far beyond mere marksmanship. After all, only massive damage could have left the crab in multiple pieces." - urban legend discussing Zachaev, gun mage.

Gun Mages are not necessarily master gunslingers, although they can be. They are not necessarily powerful mages, although they can be. What they are is a unique fusion of both magic and technology, not pitting one against the other but instead using the two in harmony for, as the meme puts it, "massive damage".

Adventures: Gun Mages make excellent adventuring material. Depending on the setting, a Gun Mage might be an outcast from a technological and/or magical society, or perhaps is a paragon of both schools, viewed in adoration by both factions. Alternatively, no such ideological split exists (such as the magitek of Eberron) and Gun Mages are more a logical outcome than deviation from the norm, with no background or motivations inherent to the class at all.

Characteristics: Gun Mages bind themselves to a single magelock which allows them to channel their abilities. Able to push the limits of their weapon to its logical limits, through this magelock they can combine spell and shot with a single pull of the trigger, the combined effect punching through almost any defense.

Alignment: Gun Mages have no inherent alignment restrictions. Both the town marshal and the freewheeling gun could be Gun Mages, but one is lawful while the other is chaotic, for example.

Religion: Gun Mages have no inherent religious tendencies, but may or may not depending on the setting. For example, some Gun Mages might revere a god of technology, while others might scorn such a god for not understanding the side of magic, while in other settings a god of technology might not even exist.

Background: Gun Mages can originate from either side of their heritage - either first learning how to use a gun or magic, then coming across the other side and discovering their ability to combine the two. Other Gun Mages might be raised in the presence of both.

Races: Gun Mages have no inherent race biases, although those with a less firm grasp on technology are far less likely to have the requisite technology that makes up one half of the class.

Other Classes: Gun Mage relations with pure mages and pure gunslingers can range from estrangement to near-worship. At the risk of sounding like a broken record, it all depends on the setting.

Role: Gun Mages put the "cannon" back in "glass cannon". While not tough front-line bruisers or battlefield controllers, and certainly not healers, their ability to annihilate a single target with pure damage is almost unmatched.

Game Rule Information

Gun Mages have the following game statistics.

Abilities: The Gun Mage's most important statistic is Dexterity, to ensure that his shots both mundane and magical are able to connect. Charisma is the next important stat, as it is the source of his magical power. As always, high Constitution is always important.
Alignment: Any.
Hit Die: d8.

Class Skills

The Gun Mage's class skills (and the key ability for each skill) are Balance (Dex), Bluff (Cha), Climb (Str), Craft (Int), Diplomacy (Cha), Gather Information (Cha), Intimidate (Cha), Jump (Str), Knowledge (arcana) (Int), Perception (Wis), Profession (Int), Sense Motive (Wis), Spellcraft (Int), Swim (Str), Tumble (Dex), and Use Magic Device (Cha).
Skill Points per Level: 4 + Int modifier.
(Pathfinder version: Gather Information is rolled into Diplomacy. Balance, Jump, and Tumble are rolled into Acrobatics.)

{table=head]Level|Base Attack Bonus|Fort Save|Ref Save|Will Save|Special|0th|1st|2nd|3rd|4th|5th|6th

+2|Magelock, Arcane Pool|3|1|-|-|-|-|-

+3|Bonus Feat|4|2|-|-|-|-|-

+3|Magelock +1, Spellshot (ranged touch)|4|3|-|-|-|-|-

+4|Pool Spell|4|3|1|-|-|-|-

+4|Rune Bullet|4|4|2|-|-|-|-

+5|Familiarity (1st)|5|4|3|-|-|-|-

+5|Magelock +2, Penetration +2|5|4|3|1|-|-|-

+6|Bonus Feat|5|4|4|2|-|-|-

+6|DEAD LEVEL|5|5|4|3|-|-|-

+7|Improved Pool Spell, Penetration +4, Breach x1, Familiarity x4|5|5|4|3|1|-|-

+7|Magelock +3|5|5|4|4|2|-|-

+8|Familiarity (2nd)|5|5|5|4|3|-|-

+8|Penetration +6, Breach x2|5|5|5|4|3|1|-

+9|Bonus Feat, Familiarity x5|5|5|5|4|4|2|-

+9|Magelock +4, Spellstorm|5|5|5|5|4|3|-

+10|Penetration +6, Breach x3|5|5|5|5|4|3|1

+10|Improved Spell Knowledge|5|5|5|5|4|4|2

+11|Familiarity (3rd), Familiarity x6|5|5|5|5|5|4|3

+11|Magelock +5, Penetration +8, Breach x4|5|5|5|5|5|5|4

+12|Bonus Feat, CAPSTONE|5|5|5|5|5|5|5[/table]

Class Skills

The following are class features of the Gun Mage.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency: A Gun Mage is proficient with all simple weapons and "small arms", such as pistols, rifles, and shotguns. Gun Mages are also proficient with light armor. A Gun Mage can cast Gun Mage spells while wearing light armor without incurring the normal arcane spell failure chance. Like any other arcane spellcaster, a Gun Mage wearing medium or heavy armor incurs a chance of arcane spell failure if the spell in question has a somatic component. A multiclass Gun Mage still incurs the normal arcane spell failure chance for arcane spells received from other classes.

Spells: A Gun Mage casts arcane spells which are drawn from the Gun Mage spell list. He can cast any spell he knows without preparing it ahead of time, the way a wizard or a cleric must.

To learn or cast a spell, a Gun Mage must have a Charisma score equal to at least 10 + the spell level. The Difficulty Class for a saving throw against a Gun Mage's spell is 10 + the spell level + the Gun Mage's Charisma modifier.

Like other spellcasters, a Gun Mage can cast only a certain number of spells of each spell level per day. His base daily spell allotment is given on table above. In addition, he receives bonus spells per day if he has a high Charisma score.

A Gun Mageís selection of spells is extremely limited. A Gun Mage begins play knowing four 0-level spells and two 1st-level spells of your choice. At each new sorcerer level, he gains one or more new spells as a sorcerer. (Unlike spells per day, the number of spells a sorcerer knows is not affected by his Charisma score and is fixed.) These new spells can be common spells chosen from the Gun Mage spell list, or they can be unusual spells that the Gun Mage has gained some understanding of by study. The Gun Mage canít use this method of spell acquisition to learn spells at a faster rate, however.

Upon reaching 5th level, and at every third Gun Mage level after that (8th, 11th, and so on), a Gun Mage can choose to learn a new spell in place of one he already knows. In effect, the Gun Mage ďlosesĒ the old spell in exchange for the new one. The new spellís level must be the same as that of the spell being exchanged, and it must be at least one level lower than the highest-level Gun Mage spell the Gun Mage can cast. A Gun Mage may swap only a single spell at any given level, and must choose whether or not to swap the spell at the same time that he gains new spells known for the level.

A Gun Mage need not prepare his spells in advance. He can cast any spell he knows at any time, assuming he has not yet used up his allotment of spells per day for the spellís level.

(Pathfinder conversion: add in the ability to know all cantrips and cast them infinitely.)

Magelock (Ex): A Gun Mage begins play with a magelock at no additional cost. (Note: special exceptions may have to be made if firearms are expensive in your setting.) The magelock is always of masterwork quality, but are not made of any special material. If a Gun Mage attempts to cast a spell without his bonded object worn or in hand, he must make a concentration check or lose the spell. The DC for this check is equal to 20 + the spell's level.

A magelock may be enchanted like any other weapon. The magic properties of a magelock, including any magic abilities added to the object, only function for the Gun Mage who owns it. If a magelock's owner dies, or the item is replaced, the object reverts to being an ordinary masterwork item of the appropriate type.

If a magelock is damaged, it is restored to full hit points the next time the Gun Mage prepares his spells. If it is lost or destroyed, it can be replaced in a special ritual that costs 200 gp per Gun Mage level plus the cost of the masterwork item. This ritual takes 8 hours to complete. Items replaced in this way do not possess any of the additional enchantments of the previous bonded item. A wizard can designate an existing firearm as his magelock. This functions in the same way as replacing a lost or destroyed magelock except that the new magelock retains its abilities while gaining the benefits and drawbacks of becoming a magelock.

At 3rd level, the magelock grants +1 insight bonus to initiative. This bonus rises by +1 every four levels afterward (7th, 11th, 15th, 19th). The Gun Mage cannot benefit from this bonus when his magelock is not at hand. In addition, the Gun Mage may draw his magelock as if he possessed the Quick Draw feat.

At 7th level, the Gun Mage can, with a DC 15 Concentration check, use the weapon's sights as an extension of his own senses, getting a picture of whatever the weapon is directly aimed at. However, the field of view is minuscule and extremely blurry - Spot checks made this way are at a -5 penalty, and all attack rolls made this way automatically miss. (You can't shoot from total cover and expect to hit anything. Balance issues.)

At 11th level, the Gun Mage can call his magelock to his hand from up to 30 feet away as free action. In addition, the Gun Mage is able to shoot using the magelock's point of view - however, he suffers a 50% miss chance as if his target has total concealment.

At 15th level, the Gun Mage can scry as per the spell scrying on his magelock at will. (This has next to zero use for reconnaissance, because a Gun Mage reaaaally doesn't want to be separated from his magelock. Do note that this lets you "blind shoot" without error as long as your target is less than 10 feet away. Niche circumstance.) In addition, the miss chance for shooting from the magelock's point of view is reduced to 20%, as if his target has concealment.

At 19th level, the Gun Mage can attack from the magelock's point of view without penalty. In addition, his magelock is indestructible as long as the Gun Mage is alive.

Arcane Pool (Su): At 1st level, the Gun Mage gains a reservoir of mystical arcane energy that he can draw upon to fuel his powers and further enhance his weapon. This arcane pool has a number of points equal to 1/2 his Gun Mage level (minimum 1) + his Charisma modifier. The pool refreshes once each day when the Gun Mage refreshes his spell slots.

At 1st level, a Gun Mage can expend 1 point from his arcane pool as a swift action to grant his magelock he is holding a +1 enhancement bonus for 1 minute. For every four levels beyond 1st, the weapon gains another +1 enhancement bonus, to a maximum of +5 at 17th level. These bonuses can be added to the weapon, stacking with existing weapon enhancement to a maximum of +5. (Pathfinder note: This ability counts as the Arcane Strike feat for meeting any prerequisites.) Multiple uses of this ability do not stack with themselves.

At 5th level, these bonuses can be used to add any of the following weapon properties: flaming, flaming burst, frost, icy burst, shock, shocking burst, or speed. (More will be added later!) Adding these properties consumes an amount of bonus equal to the propertyís cost. These properties are added to any the weapon already has, but duplicates do not stack. If the weapon is not magical, at least a +1 enhancement bonus must be added before any other properties can be added.

These bonuses and properties are decided when the arcane pool point is spent and cannot be changed until the next time the Gun Mage uses this ability. These bonuses do not function if the magelock is wielded by anyone other than the Gun Mage.

Bonus Feats: At 2nd level, a Gun Mage gets a bonus combat-oriented feat. The Gun Mage gains an additional bonus feat at every six Gun Mage levels thereafter (8th, 14th, 20th). These bonus feats must be metamagic feats, item creation feats, or fighter bonus feats. A Gun Mage must still meet all prerequisites for a bonus feat, including ability score and base attack bonus minimums.

These bonus feats are in addition to the feat that a character of any class gets from advancing levels. A Gun Mage is not limited to the list of fighter bonus feats when choosing these feats.

(Author's note: I could be a bit more finicky and cut down the list of available fighter bonus feats to just those dealing with ranged combat, but I elected to just allow them all. I forsee no problems with someone randomly dipping two levels in Gun Mage for Weapon Specialization or something.)

Spellshot (Su): At 3rd level, a Gun Mage can use his magelock to deliver ranged touch spells. When the Gun Mage casts a ranged touch spell while wielding his magelock, he may combine the spell with a fired bullet as a free action. Make a single attack roll for both attacks. If the attack roll would succeed as a ranged touch attack but not a normal ranged attack, the ranged touch spell succeeds as normal. If the attack roll would also succeed as a normal ranged attack, weapon damage is also applied to the attack. A Spellshot is treated as both a ray and a ranged attack.

(Pathfinder note: yes, this means that combined with cantrips the Gun Mage essentially has infinite +1d3 damage from an acid splash or ray of frost. This is not broken at all.)

Pool Spell (Su): At 4th level, the Gun Mage learns to use his arcane pool to cast additional spells. He can cast any Gun Mage spell that he knows by expending a number of points from his arcane pool equal to the spellís level
(minimum 1). He can cast spells with metamagic feats in this way, but he must spend additional points from his arcane pool to do so, equal to the level increase from the metamagic feats. The spellís overall adjusted level must still be one that he can cast.

Rune Bullet: At 5th level, the Gun Mage can preload a bullet with arcane energies. Whenever he casts a spell, he can choose to cast it into a bullet within his magelock instead. When this bullet successfully hits a target, the spell's effect is instantly released. Single target effects resolve on the bullet's original target. The orientation of area effects such as cones and lines is decided by the Gun Mage when the effect is released - he can choose any corner of any square his target occupies as the point of origin, and direct the effect in any direction. He can additionally simply target a grid intersection as his target - a grid intersection has DC 5.

Should the Gun Mage miss his target, the spell within the Rune Bullet does not discharge, even if the bullet does "hit" something else - for example, another part of the ground.

A Rune Bullet holds its charge for 1 minute per caster level. A Gun Mage may only have 1 Rune Bullet charged at a time. A Rune Bullet may be combined with the Spellshot ability.

Familiarity: At 6th level, the Gun Mage is able to master spells he learned a long time ago. Pick a known 1st level spell with a casting time of 1 standard action. Three times a day, plus one additional time for every four levels past the 6th that the Gun Mage possesses, the spell takes only 1 move action to cast. In addition, metamagic added to this spell does not increase its casting time. This usage of the ability does not consume daily uses.

The Gun Mage picks an additional 2nd level spell to be affected at 12th level and an additional 3rd level spell to be affected at 18th level. All three spells use the same pool of daily uses.

Penetration: At 7th level, the Gun Mage is able to use the physical power of his shots to aid the magical side and vice versa. The Spellshot ability now ignores the first 2 points of damage reduction, hardness, and energy resistance the target possesses and lowers the target's spell resistance by 2 for the purposes of resolving that particular attack. These numbers increase by two every three levels after 7th (10th, 13th, 15th, 18th).

Breach: At 10th level, once per day, the Gun Mage can ignore all damage reduction, hardness, energy resistance, and spell resistance on a single attack roll. This attack is almost always a Spellshot. He gains an additional usage of this ability every three levels after 10th (13th, 16th, 19th).

Improved Pool Spell: At 11th level, the Gun Mageís ability to cast spells using his arcane pool increases. Whenever he casts a spell using his arcane pool, he expends a number of points from his pool equal to 1/2 the
spellís level (minimum 1). This reduction also applies to increases in spell level due to metamagic feats.

Spellstorm: At 15th level, the Gun Mage is able to unleash entire torrents of combined lead and magic. As part of a full attack action the Gun Mage may cast a ranged touch attack spell as a free action. Each attack within the full attack is treated as if it were a Spellshot, as per the 3rd level ability.

Expanded Spell Knowledge: At 17th level, the Gun Mage extends his casting ability. Whenever he casts a spell using the pool spell class feature, it can be any spell from the sorcerer/wizard spell list, but if the spell is not also on the Gun Mage spell list, he must expend a number of points from his arcane pool equal to the spellís sorcerer/wizard spell level. Alternatively, he can cast a spell off the Gun Mage list that he does not know in the same fashion. He must expend expensive material components as normal for these spells.

WIP, more coming soon!

2010-12-12, 04:21 PM
Your fluff? I love it.

Skills, Craft (Small Arms) probably shouldn't be listed as a class skill unless that particular form of craft is unavailable to other classes with Craft. You may want to add a note for the skill and its use.

At each new sorcerer level, he gains one or more new spells as a sorcerer. (Unlike spells per day, the number of spells a sorcerer knows is not affected by his Charisma score and is fixed.)

In effect, the bard ďlosesĒ the old spell in exchange for the new one. The new spellís level must be the same as that of the spell being exchanged, and it must be at least one level lower than the highest-level bard spell the Gun Mage can cast. A bard may swap only a single spell at any given level, and must choose whether or not to swap the spell at the same time that he gains new spells known for the level.

A Table of Spells Known would be nice.

At 1st level, a magus can expend 1 point from his arcane pool as a swift action to grant his magelock he is holding a +1 enhancement bonus for 1 minute.

I don't suppose you're going to post stats for the various guns you've proposed?

2010-12-12, 05:04 PM
The fluff is a bit tongue in cheek, but the class is entirely serious.

Craft (small arms) is an artifact from the copy-paste of the original Gun Mage skill list. In Iron Kingdoms, it was needed to reload/maintain your weapons successfully, but in light of the mechanics I'm adopting it is not needed.

The random class-name slips? Arrrgh, that's what I get for copy-pasting the relevant bits of text out - but hey, it maintains the "Wizards wording", and takes far less effort. Fixing now. :smallredface:

The spells known table is exactly the same as a PF Bard's - the "3/4 casting spells known" progression, as I like to call it. I'm looking for a premade table of that because I don't want to have to do it by hand, gaaaa! :smallsigh:

The spells known list is coming. They consist mostly of (you guessed it) ranged touch spells. There are also a number of buffs and debuffs, and a few random battlefield control/misdirection spells. The original Gun Mage list had a lot of random utility spells, but I am going to trim most of these to make it resemble the single-mindedness of the Duskblade.

A gun list is coming as well.

*works, works, works!*

Moose Man
2010-12-12, 05:18 PM
for lvl 20, the BAB is 15/10/5
thinking of ideas 4 dead lvl.

2010-12-12, 05:49 PM
Considering moving the 17th level ability to 9th level, but I'm wondering if the arcane pool ability might end up making Gun Mages more versatile than Wizards at that point. :/

Suggestions for a unique 9th level ability and capstone wanted, please.

2010-12-12, 06:46 PM
Looks good. You seem to have fixed all the major issues with the original Gun Mage, and it does seem to be much more functional now. Also, for the feats, whilst I don't believe the gun feat in IKRPG are open content, so you could always let them use the archery and xbow feats with guns.

Also, more uses for the Arcane Pool would be nice.

2010-12-12, 07:16 PM
Maybe if I get rid of the Breach and Familiarity uses/day, or lower them, and then allow "purchases" of additional uses with arcane pool points...?

Thing is, you don't actually have very many AP. A 6th level Gun Mage is going to have 5, maybe 6. That's enough to "supercharge" his magelock two or three times and cast a couple extra spells. You want to be using Spellshot as often as possible due to its action-busting nature (unlike the Duskblade's arcane channeling, it's no harder to hit with, so there's not even a downside there), and so that's where your AP are going to go.

It'd be "cool" to see additional uses, but I'd be hard pressed to come up with a more "efficient" use than simply Spellshotting again and again.