View Full Version : 3.5e Base Character Class - Runesponge

2011-04-23, 08:09 AM
There are some who claim the best defence is a good offense. We know better. A good enough defence leaves no need for an effective offense.

The Runesponge is the class who, in simple terms, is extremely effective at taking solid hits but suffers all the more at being able to dish out any particularly solid hits.

Background:The Runesponge trains for years, enhancing their own iron constitution through a brutal training course, culminating in a ceremony where the initiates carve arcane runes into their flesh. The runes channel natural magic and twist it into a crude form of protection, which give them an ability to withstand hits that would drop a lesser mortal.

Abilities: Constitution is the stat to remember here. The Runesponge needs a high Constitution to be at their most effective. Strength is the second most important; to make sure the Runesponge can actually deal enough damage.

Role: As has already been mentioned, the Runesponge is the solid wall which takes the hits for the party.

Alignment: Any nonchaotic. A Runesponge usually believes that perfect focus is the path to power.

Hit Die: d12.

Class Skills: The Runesponge's class skills (and the key ability for each skill) are as follows: Autohypnosis (Wis), Climb (Str), Intimidate (Cha), Jump (Str), Listen (Wis), Spot (Wis), Use Magic Device (Cha) and Swim (Str).

Skill Points at First Level: (2+ Int modifier) x 4
Skill Points at Each Additional Level: 2+ Int modifier

Starting Age: As Fighter

Starting Gold: As Fighter

1|+0|+2|+0|+2|Minor Rune, Bonus feat: Endurance
3|+2|+3|+1|+3|Minor Rune,
4|+3|+4|+1|+4|Damage Reduction 1/-
5|+3|+4|+1|+4|Minor Rune,
6|+4|+5|+2|+5|Bonus feat: Diehard
7|+5|+5|+2|+5|Major Rune,
8|+6/+1|+6|+2|+6|Precision Strike, Damage Reduction 2/-
9|+6/+1|+6|+3|+6|Last Combat
10|+7/+2|+7|+3|+7|Solid Frame
11|+8/+3|+7|+3|+7|Major Rune,
12|+9/+4|+8|+4|+8|Damage Reduction 3/-
14|+10/+5|+9|+4|+9|Improved Last Combat
15|+11/+6/+1|+9|+5|+9|Great Rune, Improved Precision Strike
16|+12/+7/+2|+10|+5|+10|Damage Reduction 4/-
18|+13/+8/+3|+11|+6|+11|Master Last Combat
20|+15/+10/+5|+12|+6|+12|Master Precision Strike, Damage Reduction 5/-

Proficiencies: The Runesponge is proficient with all simple weapons and all single-handed martial weapons.

The Runesponge is also proficient with all armour and shields.


Runes: At certain levels, a Runesponge either deliberately carves runes into themselves, or they grow. Each rune may only be taken once. The effects of the runes are as follows:
Minor Rune of Barkskin|Minor Rune|14 CON|+1 bonus to Natural Armour
Minor Rune of Spell Resistance|Minor Rune|12 WIS|Spell Resistance equal to the character's total Runesponge levels +5 - does not stack
Minor Rune of Resilience|Minor Rune|12 CON|+2 to Fort saves
Minor Rune of Willpower|Minor Rune|12 WIS|+2 to Will saves
Minor Rune of Intimidation|Minor Rune|12 CHA|+2 to Intimidation checks
Rune of Health|Major Rune|16 CON, Minor Rune of Resiliance|+1 HP/ level
Rune of Toughness|Major Rune|14 CON|+5 bonus to Natural Armour
Rune of Wrath|Major Rune|14 STR|+2 to damage rolls
Rune of Focus|Major Rune|Minor Rune of Willpower|+5 to Will and Fort saves - does not stack with bonuses from other runes
Rune of Spell Resistance|Major Rune|Minor Rune of Spell Resistance|Spell Resistance equal to total levels of Runesponge +10 - does not stack
Indomitable Rune|Great Rune|Rune of Focus|Immunity to fear, paralysis and sleep effects.
Great Rune of Health|Great Rune|Rune of Health|+1 hp/level.
Great Rune of Spell Immunity|Great Rune|Rune of Spell Resistance|Spell Immunity
Great Rune of Ironskin|Great Rune|18 CON|+9 bonus to Natural Armour

Unless otherwise noted, all bonuses stack.

Precision Strike: Starting at level 8, the Runesponge can choose to receive a +2 insight bonus to attack and damage rolls while making a full attack at the expense of sacrificing all of his/ her other attacks.

Last Combat: Starting at level 9, a Runesponge whose hitpoints would normally be reduced to 0 or lower can make a Willpower save (DC 15 + damage received). On a successful save, the damage taken is ignored and the Runesponge's hitpoints is increased to 1/3 of his/ her maximum for d4 rounds. Afterwards, if the Runesponge is still alive, the Runesponge dies instantly.

Solid Frame: At level 10, the Runesponge can choose to substitute their Constitution modifier for their Dexterity modifier to AC.

Improved Last Combat: As Last Combat, except temporary hitpoints increase to 2/3 of maximum for d6 rounds.

Improved Precision Strike: As Precision Strike, except it is a +4 insight bonus for two attacks.

Master Last Combat: As Improved Last Combat, except temporary hitpoints restored to the maximum for d10 rounds and no longer needs a Will save.

Master Precision Strike: As Improved Precision Strike, except that the Runesponge gains a +6 insight bonus for three attacks.

2011-04-23, 08:50 AM
How does he keep the enemies from walking around him to attack his allies instead of him?

Gideon Falcon
2011-04-23, 03:03 PM
Indeed. That is the first mistake that Wizards always made with their tank classes; Having tons of hp is useless if they only attack your allies. It's especially so with ranged attackers, since they don't even need to get past you. As such, you need some manner of discouraging people from attacking your allies, such as the knight's challenge abilities (one of wizard's first steps towards an actual tank), or a shield other effect. Otherwise, the hp is only good for keeping you alive while you deal out incredible offenses.

2011-04-23, 03:30 PM

Reach increase Arrow Catching (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/magicItems/magicArmor.htm#arrowCatching) rune, at any attack aimed at someone within reach (as they bat arrows out of the air with rune-enhanced swiftness?) Stand Still (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/psionic/psionicFeats.htm#standStill) as a bonus feat or a rune

All this class is at the moment is ever-increasing numbers. Numbers don't get things accomplished; abilities do. I see few abilities that let "the Runesponge [be] the solid wall which takes the hits for the party." I think you've got a good start though.

EDIT: I've been thinking about this a little more. I think you should split up runes into two groups: enhancement runes you can inscribe on stuff (these will be similar to the number-enhancers you have) and inherent runes that give defensive abilities like the Arrow Catching and Stand Still effects above.

EDIT2: Enhancement runes. Unless noted, they last 1 minute per point of the Runesponge's Con modifier and take a swift action to apply to an adjacent ally or self. [level] is equal to Runesponge class levels.

Harmony effects apply if the previous rune's effects are in place; as an example, Rune of Vigor's harmony effect applies to a creature also under the effects of Minor Rune of Resilience. Great Rune of Health's harmony effect requires Rune of Vigor but not Minor Rune of Resilience.
{table=head]Rune|Effects|Harmony Effect
Minor Rune of Resilience|+[level]/3 to Fort saves (minimum +1)
Rune of Vigor|+[level] temporary HP|+Wis temporary HP
Great Rune of Health|+[level] to saves vs. disease, poison, and paralysis.|Regeneration equal to Wisdom score, overcome by cold iron weapons.
Minor Rune of Swiftness|+[level]/3 to Reflex saves (minimum +1)
Rune of Agility|?|?
Great Rune of Grace|Evasion|Improved Evasion
Minor Rune of Willpower|+[level]/3 to Will saves (minimum +1)
Rune of Focus|?|?
Great Rune of Indomitability|+[level] to saves vs. fear, sleep, and mind-affecting effects.|?
Minor Rune of Barkskin|+[level]/4 bonus to Natural Armour (minimum +1)
Rune of Toughness|DR half [level] / cold iron.|DR/adamantine instead
Great Rune of Ironskin|?|?
Minor Rune of Spell Resistance|SR [level]+5
Rune of Spell Resistance|SR [level]+10|+Wis to saves vs. spells
Great Rune of Immunity|SR [level]+15|Magic immunity (note: like all magic immunity, still acts like unbeatable spell resistance only)
Minor Rune of Fright|+[level]/2 to Intimidate checks (minimum +1)
Rune of Fear|Enemies within 10ft of ally must make a DC 10+[level]/2 Will save or be shaken while they remain in the area. A successful saving throw negates the effect on that creature for 24 hours.|Saving throw DC increased by Wis.
Great Rune of Nightmare|?|?
Minor Rune of Power|+[level]/2 melee damage (minimum +1)
Rune of Smiting|?|?
Great Rune of Wrath?|?|?[/table]