View Full Version : Daertu-Monster Hunter Brainstorm

2016-04-11, 07:55 PM
Hello, everybody, I have been designing a gothic horror/fantasy game based off of the Pathfinder system set in the same sort of time period as the Innistrad block of MtG. I unfortuantly do not currently have a huge core for what I want to represent, and do, so am stuck without much in actual content besides ideas and thoughts at the moment, so I would love critique on what I currently have and suggestions for new ideas and how to represent current ones. Thank you to everybody in advance.

The rule of man is one that has ended for this age. Human kingdoms have been reconquered by ancient evils, monstrous creatures, and fickle magic creatures, forced to live in serfdom at best, food at worst. Only one kingdom holds strong, the kingdom of Carthen. It's numbers swelled by the refugees of the world, Carthen holds strong against the encroaching inhumans, protecting its lands and holding them despite constant raids, attacks, and outright invasions. But that is not the only problem facing them.

Constant exposure to the inhumans have lead to the arrival of half-humans, humans born of inhuman or to people who have suffered inhuman exposure, bearing abilities not human. The nature of what gave them this also tempts them, and many half-humans served as agents of the inhumans, until the king ordered that they be put to the sword. For years afterwards, all of the Half-human children were killed, and the numbers of them born decreased further and further. However, this was stopped by King Elatier. Looking at the historical record, Elatier found that while many Half-humans had been traitors, many had also been some of the kingdom's greatest heroes. Every Half-human had magic potential, and every one possessed spectacular abilities. And so the new policy was adopted concerning Half-humans.

Henceforth, all Half-human children were taken from their parents and raised in special orders dedicated to their training. They would go out to the border settlements and the wilds under the watchful eyes of a Human leader, and also scour towns suspected of hiding either disguised Inhumans or Half-humans, in addition to serving as backup to the army or cosntable where needed. They would bring the war to the Inhumans, and buy Humanity time to become ascendant again. While many different orders were formed, they were all called one name Daertu, a word from ancient times that could mean either the Hunter of Monsters, or Monstrous Hunters.

Here is the majority of the crunch I have created so far, a lot of it is jsut ideas ATM, so any suggestions are very much appreciated.

Section 1: Character Creation
This is probably going to be the largest section, as so much goes into character creation that I’ll have to tie a lot of changes into here, so let’s get started.

1st. Choose Race
As a member of the Daertu, you have inhuman blood that forces you to join the Daertu. So far I have six different types of Race, each of which have their own sets of abilities, that you can spend points on to improve as you level up (Addressed later in Character Advancement). In an effort to avoid races being pigeonholed into being good for certain builds only, each Race has different sets of abilities that allow them to serve any needed role equally well as long as you send the points on that set of abilities. Also, while they all can serve the role, the abilities are different between race to avoid repetitiveness. For example, for CC abilities, Spirit-blood can Debuff with Pronouncement of Doom and bypass Armor with Ghost Attack, Beast-blood can increase their natural abilities in a variety of ways, etc. (still working these out)

The six races are
-Witch-blooded: You have the blood of the magical race of females that curse, hex, and disguise themselves.
-Beast-blooded: Blood of the beastmen, various animal abilities
-Outsiders: Do not actually have the blood of these psychic creatures, but their ancestors may have either been corrupted or had their minds controlled by them.
-Spirits: Much like Outsiders, being like this means that your ancestors were involved in necromancy, were cursed by death spells, or possessed by undead souls.
-Wyrm: Dragon and Reptile related, likely through seduction by an adventurous adolescent dragon
-Fey: Your ancestors was one of the mischievous and dangerous fey.

2nd. Choose Background/Order?
Choose the early background of your life, where you were raised, etc. Currently the blandest part of the process, I’m considering cutting it.

3rd. Choose Classes
That plural is there for a reason. This is the first huge divergent from typical D&D and Pathfinder, in that you choose three classes to start; One Combat Class, One Career Class, and one Mage Class. You do not however, gain levels in all three at the same time. Instead, what happens is that you gain levels that you can spend either in one of three classes or your racial abilities, choosing which you want to focus and how. Options I am considering
-Class levels have to be close to each other, such as none of your classes/racial abilities can be more than 5 levels away from each other.
-Starting levels 2-4, favorign 3

-Marshall: Much like Warlord, this guy focuses on combat, but also teamwork, aiding allies and using teamwork to take down foes, much like through teamwork feats, except without the idiotic other person requirement feat.
-Destroyer: Focuses on heavy weapon devastation, dealing as much damage as possible, and dealing it fast. The barbarian based class
-Marksman: The ranged focus class, specializes in ranged combat exclusively, little to no melee benefits.
-Stalker: The middle of the road group, and the best archer, this one is mostly one-half of the Ranger, the other half being the Tracker.
-Assassin: the rogue of the group, this guy is your sneak/stab guy.
-Guardian: This guy focuses on stacking armor, and protecting allies from enemy attacks.
Occupation Classes
-Tracker: Tracks monsters, helps your survive in the wilds, and is the guy you go to for making monster traps, of which there will be a few. Not much to really differentiate yet. They do get trapfinding
-Thief: General thief stuff for right now, working more on it.
-Herbalist: The closest you will ever get to a healer in this game, can create salves, potions, and other herbal remedies. Do not expect Alchemist level stuff out of him, it's mostly like Auto-stabilize, gain more HP while resting, IK alchemy vs PF. They also are one of only two classes capable of making and handling poisons, the other being Assassins, and they do it much better than the backstabbers.
-Armorer: Repair damaged armor and weapons, create new gear, and bond strange and magical materials found beyond the kingdom’s borders to the group's gear.
-Investigator: The social face and the expert in Monster lore who helps identify the weak points of what the group is fighting. Help put together the pieces of the puzzle, and find disguised monsters and rogue Daetru.
-Infiltrator: The other Face class, this one is designed to infiltrate enemy groups, acting as a spy. Unlike other Datru, this one is expected to play the part of their monstrous heritage to infiltrate monster society such as vampire castles or fey courts, and also cults inside the kingdom itself. Very disguise focused.
Mage Careers
Storm mage
Metal Mage

There are going to be plenty of changes here, as I do not want the Quadratic Wizard to step foot into my game, but at the same time, I don’t want to squash it so hard that I end up with a Square-root one either, so I decided to take inspiration from the Kineticist. Each Mage CLass starts with a Core SLA and a list of optional ones they choose from as they increase in level. Starts with one core and one optional, and gains another one every 4 or 5 levels. Also, a separate stat, Arcane, is going to be used for casting stats and the number of times the SLA can be used.

Proficiencies are going to be greatly changed since everybody has access to martial classes. THe new weapon groupings are

Light: The previous light weapons of Pathfinder, except ranged ones are included, Throwing Dagger, Shortbow, Light Crossbow. The melee Light weapons will use Dex to-hit and for damage.
Medium: All one-hand weapons and Regular Bow(previously Longbow) Crossbow, Javelin, Throwing Ax
Heavy: Two-handed weapons, and Heavy Crossbows and Longbows.

Obviously weapon stats are going to have to be changed around a bit. Armor proficiencies are the same, but Light Shields need the Light Shield Proficiency, Heavy Shields are Medium, and Tower is Heavy.

-Assassins have proficiency in all Light Weapons, Armor, and the Buckler.
-Stalkers have Proficiency in Medium Weapons, Medium Armor, Medium Shields
-Marksman has Heavy Ranged, Medium Melee, Medium Armor, Light Shields
-Both Destroyer and Marshal have Heavy Weapons, Heavy Armor, Medium Shields
-Guardian has Heavy Weapon, Heavy Armor, and Heavy Shield

Ability Scores
With the Inclusion of a seventh stat, the suggested point buy is going to be 30, between it and the MAD nature most character are going to have, but the limit is a cap on 16 in any attribute when the point buy is done. Stat increase after during Chargen is not decided by race, but class, as you improve one stat by one depending on which classes you get.

Armor Class
Instead of the old combined number, AC is now 10+Dex, dodge, and other dexterous based defences, while Armor, Deflection, and other similar AC buffs instead create DR for the character.

Each class give a bonus to a single save equal to the level you have in the class.
Marksman, Thief, Assassin, Stalker: Ref
Marshal, Destroyer, Guardian: Con
Investigator: San
Herbalist: Wis
Tracker, Armorer: undecided

The optional unchained system of pathfinder where you take penalties as you take wounds applies to both you and NPC’s. One of the destroyer’s major core abilities is being able to ignore some of the penalties.


First, off, sneak attack is going to be something completely different than what other games have. It can only be gotten from surprised opponents or oens who can't see you, and instead of dealing extra damage, Sneak attack will instead double the crit range of whatever weapon you are using for it. The assassin's main damage tool is going to Vital Strikes instead, which add extra damage to the attack, but only if the Assassin can roll above the creature's AC by a certain amount for the attack roll. Assassin's are msotly going to have abilities focused on hit-and-run, crit effects and fishing, and also stealth.


Necromancer's will have two principal starting SLA's, summoning undead, and death touch. Summoning Undead will slowly scale up with level, with lower level necromancers only being able to animate a small or a few tiny creatures, with undead spirits such as Wraiths being late-game achievements. Death Touch will be a touch attack that deals necrotic damage, although it can be upgraded to drain life, be applied to weapons, become ranged, and inflict debuffs. Optional abilities will be available as more levels are put into the class.


Inquisitors are the human overseers of the Daertu teams, there to secure resources, interact with nobles and bureaucrats, direct the group's efforts, and make sure that the Daertu do not turn. For many, killing is not the go to option, instead the preference being to keep the Daertu on their side by being friendly and invested in the survival of humanity. This is important, as often Inquisitors and other Daertu support staff are the only humans who the Daertu can count as friends. However, if a Daertu turns, no matter how regretful, the inquisitor will kill a renegade Daertu no matter how close they were.

It is suggested that Inquisitors are an NPC option to be controlled by the GM, but optional rules are included for playing a pure human, and an Inquisitor (also a clergy, but I'll get to that later) if somebody really wants to.

Daertu Clergy

The clergy of Daertu is split between the human gods, both good and evil and neutral. Most of their feuding has been put aside in favor of keeping their worshippers alive, as their extinction means the gods extinction as well. The clergy was more accepting of Half-Humans than others, but still obeyed the kill orders on them. However, with the creation of Daertu, the clergy was the first to volunteer to train, support, and finance the Daertu. More to be created later

Daertu Orders

There are several orders of the Daertu, financed and trained by a different group each, wether it be one of the gods churches, a noble, or the king himself. Each of these orders have preferred methods of catchign monsters and different attitudes as well.

Mechanically, Orders will give small benefits to a character. Mixed-order parties are allowed, although single-order parties get a larger benefit.

Daertu Clergy Mechanical Benefeits

Dartu clergy has benefits depending on which gods you have the most influence with (covered below). Here are the gods and goddesses that have been formed so far with ideas for benefits.

-Aereas, the Goddess of the Sun and Light: The principal goddess theses days, Aereas represents the light standing up to the darkness of the world, and is the most worshipped goddess of the group. Originally pacifist, recent changes and the destruction of one of the warrior gods of good, Tilvar, has forced Aereas into accepting the role, a change that has only happened in the past few decades. As is such, her clergy still remain pacifist for the most part, with her instead choosing to channel her assumed warrior power through the army instead, and now the Daertu. Benefits of high influence with her clergy is access to healing, holy water and blessed silver, easier access to blessing weapons, and some light base-items that are still being worked on, including sunstones

-Kaerthu, The huntress: Kaerthu has not been popular for a while, many seeing the goddess of the wild as an ally of the Inhumans, but recent events have changed that, with her small clergy emphasizing her role as the goddess of Human exploration, and hunting. As is such, she is one of the major supporters of the Daetru, as many of them are the hunters of Monsters. Benefits from high influence with her Clergy are detailed maps, find-north stones, hider cloaks, manyberries (Full meal in one berry) and other odds and ends focused around traps, exploration, and natural monsters.

-Varseth, God of Inquiry: A supporter of Daetru investigators, Varseth is a god of both law and also searching, and as is such he is often called upon for the finding of infiltrating inhumans and rogue half-humans. Benefits from his clergy include truthspeaker serum, better investigative gear, Secrets (capitalized for a reason) and TBD.

-Dosalog, Evil God of War: One of the few evil gods who is still allowed to support Daetru orders, mainly because of their effectiveness, Dosalog Daetru have access to better warrior equipment.

Special weapons and gear
-Holy Water
Damages a lot of stuff, but is much rarer to get, as it requires very high clergy, and lots of effort. Also, no player can be Clergy, as while the churches of the gods and goddesses accept them, they cannot let them be priests.
Essentially how to make magic weapons without cause intense suspicion of the maker, these come in most of the Pathfinder variations. I may have some more home brewed later.
-Bear-Trap Crossbow
Essentially a heavy crossbow that fires a bear trap and rope, high damage and good chance of crippling/snaring. To even out Crossbows/bows, specialty crossbows are going to be a thing, and higher AP values.
-Net Crossbow
A crossbow that fires a net, this has a better of chance of hitting than the bear-Trap bow, but can only ensnare.
-Silver Weapons
More damage against some creatures, by extremely expensive and more likely to break. Silver edging is better, but requires negotiations with a very good smithy (or if you have a high-level Armorer, if I ever make that Occupational class)

Feat Changes
Borrowed from TheWorldIsSquare’s Feat Tax Article

Martial Mastery
Gone. Combat feats like Weapon Focus now apply to weapon groups instead of a specific weapon by default.
Pathfinder frequently forces a player to invest heavily in a single weapon. For instance, two-weapon fighting rogues are stuck with mirrored weapons so their Weapon Finesse and Weapon Focus benefits apply to both their attacks. Expanding these feats to cover the weapon groups mentioned under the fighter’s Weapon Training would make things much more flexible. We might finally see a samurai wielding a daisho.

Weapon Finesse
Gone. The “light weapons” category has been renamed to “finesse weapons.” Characters can choose to use either their dexterity bonus or their strength bonus to hit with these weapons, no feat required. “Finesse” is also now a weapon attribute like “brace” or “trip,” allowing a weapon in another category to be finessed (like the rapier).
Weapon Finesse is the ultimate feat tax. It’s begrudgingly mandatory for most rogues, specifically two-weapon fighting builds. I understand Paizo worries that dexterity might become an uber stat, but weapon finesse still doesn’t grant a damage bonus. It’s really the only thing rogue’s have to compensate for their lackluster BAB.

Agile Maneuvers
Gone. A character adds their dexterity to the CMB if they’re wielding a finesse weapon and their strength otherwise.
This goes hand and hand with the previous change. Making combat maneuvers more accessible will be a recurring theme of this article.

Combat Expertise
Gone. Now simple a combat option for any class with at least +1 BAB.
The most heinous feat tax next to Weapon Finesse. Combat Expertise is taken to progress to better feats then promptly forgotten about. I like it as an option, but it’s not worth spending a feat on.

Improved Trip, Improved Disarm, Improved Dirty Trick, Improved Feint, Improved Reposition, Improved Steal
Gone. Replaced with Deft Maneuvers.

Deft Maneuvers
New. You do not provoke an attack of opportunity when performing a trip, disarm, dirty trick, feint, reposition, or steal combat maneuver. In addition, you receive a +2 bonus on checks with these combat maneuvers. Now a prerequisite for the relevant greater combat maneuver feats.
Why is it so hard to pull off combat maneuvers in this game? It seems like you need three feats before you can attempt to trip someone without impaling yourself on your own polearm. Eliminating Combat Expertise as a prerequisite and wrapping up all these improved combat maneuver feats into a single package simplifies things. It would prevent fighters from being stonewalled if a monster is immune to their combat maneuver of choice and make the feats much more attractive to feat-starved classes.

Power Attack
Gone. Now simply a combat option for any class with at least +1 BAB.
Power Attack is too useful to be a feat. It’s the first feat taken by any character with the strength and BAB to abuse it and likely ranks as the single most popular feat in Pathfinder. Turning it into a combat option available to anyone with at least +1 BAB is a reasonable change and still stalls caster and hybrid classes from grabbing specialized combat feats too early.

Improved Bull Rush, Improved Drag, Improved Overrun, Improved Sunder
Gone. Replaced with Powerful Maneuvers.

Powerful Maneuvers
New. You do not provoke an attack of opportunity when performing a bull rush, drag, overrun, or sunder combat maneuver. In addition, you receive a +2 bonus on checks with these combat maneuvers. Now a prerequisite for the relevant greater combat maneuver feats.
The same deal as Deft Maneuvers. More combat maneuvers at a lower feat investment is just a good idea all around.

Point-Blank Shot
Gone. Precise Shot replaces it as a prerequisite for further archery feats.
I like Point-Blank Shot, but Precise Shot is the real breadwinner for any ranged build. It’s the one trick every archer wants out of the gate and the one combat feat many wizards and sorcerers would love to cherry pick to aid their ray spells. The loss of Point-Blank Shot can easily be compensated for by Weapon Focus or Weapon Specialization, but it’s not like archery builds are hurting anyhow.

Deadly Aim
Gone. Now simple a combat option for any class with at least +1 BAB.
Like Power Attack, Deadly Aim is another mandatory feat that should be available to everyone. It takes a high BAB to abuse Deadly Aim, so I’m not overly concerned about the change throwing a wrench into class balance.

Gone. Merged with Dodge.

Revised. You gain a +1 dodge bonus to your AC. This bonus increases to +4 against attacks of opportunity caused when you move out of or within a threatened tile. A condition that makes you lose your Dex bonus to AC also makes you lose the benefits of this feat.
Spring Attack isn’t a great feat, but it lends itself to interesting builds. Unfortunately, the prerequisites of Dodge and Mobility are often too much for a player to stomach. Merging these feats makes Spring Attack more accessible and subsequently transforms two mediocre feats into a single spectacular one.

Improved Two-Weapon Fighting
Gone. Merged with Greater Two-Weapon Fighting

Greater Two-Weapon Fighting
Revised. Prerequisites now Dex 17, Two-Weapon Fighting, BAB +6. In addition to the standard single extra attack you get with an off-hand weapon, you get a second attack with it, albeit at a –5 penalty. Once your BAB reaches +11, you also gain a third attack with your off-hand weapon, albeit at a –10 penalty.
Two-weapon fighting isn’t as good as Paizo seems to think it is. Pathfinder Society scenarios are seemingly designed to prevent full-attacks; I’ve rarely encountered one without difficult terrain, magical entanglement, or some other battlefield hindrance. The massive feat investment only adds insult to injury. Coupled with the Weapon Finesse change, this feat merger puts two-weapon fighting more in line with the generally much stronger two-handed weapon builds.