View Full Version : [Class] Idiot Savant

2007-06-09, 01:02 AM
Here is my idea for a flexible fighter that seems both limited and able to do anything. It uses feats that can change daily and even a tiny bit of magical ability. Let me know what you think. This is a pretty complex mechanic so there will probably be balance issues to iron out. I present:


A flawed mind can be like a fractured crystal, broken but still brilliant. The Idiot Savant's intelligence at a glance would seem low, but their congenital stupidity is actually a sign of distraction rather than slowness, focusing on thoughts that are so advanced and abstract they are rarely relevant. Their mind collects and pools information, but often cannot remember it when needed or apply it to reality in any meaningful way. When an Idiot Savant does connect back with the outside world though they can be incredibly effective before slipping back into their heads.

Prerequisite: INT 8 or lower

Alignment: Chaotic good or neutral

Hit die:

Class Skills:
Appraise (Int), Balance (Dex), Climb (Dex), Craft (Int) Disable Device (Int), Knowledge All (Int), Listen (Wis) Open Lock (Dex), Perform (Cha), Profession (Wis), Sleight of Hand (Dex), Spellcraft (Int) Spot (Wis), Tumble (Dex), Use Magic Device (Cha), Use Rope (Dex)

Skill Points at 1st Level:
(10 - Int modifier) x 4

Skill Points at each additional level
10 - Int modifier

Table: The Idiot Savant
{table="head"]Level|Base Attack Bonus|Fort Save|Ref Save|Will Save|Special
1|+1|+0|+2|+0|Simple, Hidden Genius, Mercurial Feat|
2|+2|+0|+3|+0|First Expertise, Cantrip|
3|+3|+1|+3|+1|Improved Mercurial Feat|
4|+3|+1|+4|+1|Evasion, Copy Tongue|
5|+5|+1|+4|+1|Second Mercurial Feat|
6|+6/+1|+2|+5|+2|Second Expertise|
7|+7/+2|+2|+5|+2|Improved Second Mercurial Feat|
8|+8/+3|+2|+6|+2|Uncanny Dodge|
9|+9/+4|+3|+6|+3|Inquisitive, Duplicate Spell|
10|+10/+5|+3|+7|+3|Third Mercurial Feat|
11|+11/+6/+1|+3|+7|+3|Improved Duplicate Spell|
12|+12/+7/+2|+4|+8|+4|Improved Mercurial Feat|
13|+13/+8/+3|+4|+8|+4|Third Expertise|
14|+14/+9/+4|+4|+9|+4|Duplicate Feat|
15|+15/+10/+5|+5|+9|+5|Fourth Mercurial Feat|
17|+17/+12/+7/+2|+5|+10|+5|Improved Fourth Mercurial Feat|
18|+18/+13/+8/+3|+6|+11|+5|Exotic Expertise|
19|+19/+14/+9/+4|+6|+11|+6|Greater Duplicate Spell|
20|+20/+15/+10/+5|+6|+12|+6|Improved Duplicate Feat|

Class Features:

An Idiot Savant is proficient with all simple and martial weapons. They are proficient with light armor and shields.

An Idiot Savant's intelligence cannot be raised above 8 even by magical means. They also receive +2 on will saves against spells that would lower their intelligence further.

Hidden Genius
Once per day at level one and an additonal time for every four Idiot Savant levels an they may substitute their wisdom or charisma in lieu of their intelligence for a roll or take 20 in a perform instrument check with any instrument that is just to create impressive music and not some magical effect. Using two uses of Hidden Genius at once allows them to add their wisdom AND charisma bonus to a roll instead of using int.

Mercurial Feat/Improved Mercurial Feat

For each mercurial feat select any two fighter bonus feats. Upon using either of those feats the mercurial feat is locked as that feat for the rest of the day. The other selected feat is dormant and unusable. A mercurial feat is gained at levels 1, 5, 10, and 15. Each mercurial feat improves two levels after it is acquired, allowing a third fighter bonus feat to be added. It still is locked as a single feat for the day as soon as used. You may select the same fighter bonus feat as an option for more than one mercurial feat and if used choose which mercurial feat gets locked. You may select feats with prerequisites as options if you have the prereq in another mercurial feat but cannot actually use that unless you have the prerequisite feats active.

Select any category of knowledge. You may substitute your wisdom for intelligence on all rolls related to this branch of knowledge. You gain a new expertise at levels 2,6, and 13.

Once a day you can cast any 0-level bard spell.

Copy Tongue
Once per day after listening to an unknown language for one minute you can learn to speak and understand it fluently for the next eight hours. After that time it is forgotten. This does not bestow literacy in that language.

Magical traps that rely on reading, such as exploding runes or symbol of insanity, are no longer trigged by you. You can still be affected by them if trigged by another.

Duplicate Spell
Once per week an Idiot Savant can cast any sorc/wiz/bard spell 5th level or lower that they witnessed another person cast that day as if they had the Eschew Materials feat. They need any material components costing over 1gp. If the savant is also a wizard they cannot cast a spell from their barred school. At level 11 the spell can be any spell they witnessed cast in the past week. At level 19 the spell can be as high as level 7 or it can also be any 3rd or lower level spell they witnessed at any point in the past.

Duplicate Feat
Three times a week but no more than once per day they may know for the rest of the day any currently unknown feat they have the prerequisites for that they witnessed another person perform that day. At level 20 this ability improves so that the duplicated feat only has to have been witnessed in the past week.

At level 16 an Idiot Savant becomes fluent and literate in all non-secret languages.

Exotic Expertise
At level 18 the idiot savant gains proficiency with all exotic weapons.

2007-06-09, 02:58 AM
Skill Points 11 - Int modifier
A bit high. Most Idiot Savants would have an 8 Int, since lower than 8 is kinda rare anyway. Meaning, 10 per level. More than an average, non skill-monkey rogue, Int rogue (12 Int), but they have much few class skills than a rogue does. Also, odd numbers don't fit often for skill points.

At level 16 an Idiot Savant becomes fluent and literate in all non-secret languages.
Why? This one doesn't seem to fit thematically.

Generally. He seems like you threw a bunch of different classes together, and it's strange. He has perfect BAB and gets strange fighter bonus feats. And yet, he replicates spells, has only a d6 Hit Die, loads of skills (Minimum 7/level) and uses Int or Cha for skill checks related to Int (which fighters hardly do anyway). This ones a miss for me, since it's kidna jumbled.

2007-06-09, 04:02 AM
What? So have a neurological disorder is now a class? What's next, the A.D.H.D. cleric?

Classes don't have ability score requirements and base classes don't even have requirements.

This should be a flaw or a feat, and that's assuming its anything other than an ability score distribution, which it probably shouldn't be.

2007-06-09, 04:03 AM
Yep, skill points are definetly a bit hight. Like, very hight, at least for that number of skills. Granted, he gets all knowledges, but still. Also, I'm having a little problem with class itself. This is essentially a bard without bard song, with fighter BAB and a few spells to back him up. With feats, armour and weapon proficiencies he more than makes for the lack of bard song. Basically, this is bard on steroids. Especialy if he choses the right skills, and with that much skill points that shouldn't be a problem.

Still, it would probably make a good class in a theme based campaign. What kind of campaign would that be remains to be seeing.

2007-06-09, 06:51 AM
How about making it not provide an XP penalty for multiclassing, just like the PrCs?
then it would be a flavorful choice for those mentally addled.

didn't get it about mercurial feats.
you just use one of the 2 once per day, right?

2007-06-09, 10:35 AM
The class is kinda of based on River from Firefly, perfect at everything sometimes, completely ineffectual at others.

The mercurial feats, knowledge skills, and limited magic reflect the fact that he/she can learn anything and perform it expertly but may forget how to do it before long.

The class is a character less inherently able to deal damage than the fighter because they only receive 4 fighter bonus feats, and then the duplicate feat. So at level 20 they only have 5 feats that can improve how they dish out damage.

The character makes up for this by being extremely variable. For example let's say the character is level 3 and has a single Improved Mercurial Feat. The options they selected are Combat Expertise, Two Weapon Fighting, and Blind Fight. Until one of them is used the character has no feat active.

So let's say the party encounters a band of multiple foes and the Savant needs to deal as much damage as possible. They could choose Two Weapon Fighting and draw a second blade and make full use of that feat. They cannot use Combat Expertise or Blind Fight until the next day, even if an invisible enemy comes along and Blind Fight would be really useful. Alternatively if they had encountered the invisible foe first and used Blind Fight they wouldn't be able to use Two Weapon Fighting when facing the attacking group.

This keeps the Savant very flexible. At level 12 their mercurial feats could give them Weapon Focus, Weapon Specialization, and Greater Weapon Specialization with a broadsword one day, and another day give them Point Blank Shot, Rapid Shot, and Many Shot. At level 17 the mercurial feats lets them switch between any fighter feat progression a level 6 fighter could pick from.

I lowered the skill point gain. I wanted to give them extra to offset their mandated low intelligence but 11 is too high.

2007-06-09, 04:57 PM
Classes don't have ability score requirements and base classes don't even have requirements.

Aside from Alignments requirements.
As per the Barbarian, the Bard, the Druid, the Monk, and the Paladin, just for starters....

2007-06-09, 06:30 PM
ah, that makes things clearer.

just got confused by the "locked" thing.

btw i like it.
it's not only River Tam but a number of fiction characters who fit under the discription.
a nice class =)

2007-06-12, 09:05 AM
Thanks. Do you think the magic aspect is a bit too much? I added magic in also because I figured it'd be appropriate for a strange character to be able to cast a potent spell once in a long while. Maybe it dilutes the central idea of being able to switch feats around though.

Human Paragon 3
2007-06-12, 10:54 AM
This seems like it would make a better PrC than a base class. Like, the stupid rogue or fighter that suddenly unlocks his inner genius. The strange abillity requirement and odd selecetion of abillities feels more like a PrC too.