View Full Version : [PrestigeClass] It's not just blood that I plan to take from you.

2007-08-06, 06:17 PM
I've tried this once in the past--probably two years ago now--and
didn't do so well then. I'm ready to give it another shot.

I'm not really that good at judging balance myself. Please give me some feedback.


Rikari are warriors who have drawn on forbidden aspects of runecraft to feed upon the life-force of others. In doing so, they gain great power at great cost. Members of this class are frequently mistaken for vampires; indeed, there may be more relation there than most suspect.

Most Rikari are evil, though some scant few have sought power in order to accomplish noble goals. Such high-minded ones must be constantly vigilant to defend others from themselves, while defending themselves from good-intentioned foes who are eager to set the natural order right, and sufferring the consequences of such unnatural acts.

After taking their first level in the Rikari class, characters can not multi-class except into classes which explicitly negate this restriction.

Hit die: d8.

The Rikari gains no proficiencies in any new weapons or armor.

Skill points: 2 + int modifier.

Weapon focus in an edged melee weapon.
Must possess one of this weapon with at least a +1 enchantment bonus.
Two ranks in Craft: Weaponsmithing.
BAB of +5 or higher.
Special: On deciding to take a level in the class, the character gains Lifedraw, and must use it at least once to advance to first level in the class. After using Lifedraw, there is no going back.

{table=head]Level|Base Attack<br>Bonus|Fort Save|Ref Save|Will Save|Special

+0|Bonus Feat; Lifedraw; Weapon Bond; Withdrawal; Holy Aversion
+0|Low-light vision; Light sensitivity; Track
+1|Youth; Lesser Blood Frenzy; Pallor; Hardened Weapon
+1|Ability Score Increase; Sunlight Vulnerability
+1|Deathless Frenzy; Heightened Senses; Incredible Metabolism
+2|Blood Frenzy
+2|Soul Decay; Living Weapon; Frenzy 2/day
+3|Diamond Weapon; Involuntary Frenzy
+3|Evasion; Silver Vulnerability
+3|Savage Frenzy; Frenzy 3/day
+4|Turn Vulnerability; Drawing Criticals
+4|Soul Rot; Greater Weapon Bond
+4|Greater Blood Frenzy
+5|Soul Transference


Bonus Feat: At first level, Rikari receive one bonus feat, from the fighter bonus feat list. The character must meet all prerequisites for this feat.

Lifedraw: By performing a coup-de-grace action, the Rikari can draw life force from a defeated foe. In addition to normal coup-de-grace effects, the target also takes 2d6 constitution damage; each point of constitution damage dealt heals the Rikari by five hit points, not exceeding the Rikari's normal maximum hit points. This attack must be performed with the Rikari's bonded weapon. On completing a Lifedraw, the Rikari automatically enters blood frenzy if the ability is available; if the Rikari is already in a frenzy, the frenzy's duration is doubled. Only living creatures with a constitution score and intelligence of three or greater are valid targets for this ability.

Weapon Bond: At first level, the Rikari gains the ability to enhance the enchantment on his own weapon. He must still pay the regular cost of enchanting the weapon in material costs and research. This only applies to the weapon which the Rikari used to enter the class. If the weapon is ever destroyed, the Rikari must repair it or begin to suffer withdrawal.

Withdrawal: If the Rikari fails to use Lifedraw for more than two months, the craving for others' life begins to take a terrible toll. The Rikari loses all aspects of the class--except as otherwise stated--after two months. After three months, the character's withdrawal is so severe that he is restricted to only a single action per round. This condition lasts for the rest of the character's life, even returning if the character is slain and returned from the dead, barring the following: It can be overcome for one week by receiving the spell Restoration, and removed completely with Remove Curse. Remove Curse can only work if the former Rikari is willing. Use of Remove Curse completely and permanently removes all Rikari levels.

Holy Aversion: A Rikari can not willingly set foot on holy ground dedicated to any faith--including one to which the Rikari belongs--without being expressly invited. The Rikari always knows whether or not an invitation is valid. The Rikari is stunned, nauseated and repulsed as if bull rushed, if he should ever attempt to enter.

Low-light vision: At second level, the Rikari can see twice as well in the dark as a human can, retaining the ability to distinguish color and detail.

Light sensitivity: At second level, the Rikari is dazzled by sunlight or other bright light.

Track: At second level, the Rikari gains Track as a bonus feat.

Youth: At third level, the Rikari's age category moves to its race's prime. This can cause a decrease in physical age; intelligence, wisdom and charisma are not affected. As long as the Rikari does not go without using Lifedraw for more than a month, further aging does not occur. Underaged Rikari may find their growth to be stunted permanently, as they reach complete physical maturity faster but without growing to full height. On loss of class abilities, the character advances to its race's final age category (without gaining intelligence, wisdom, or charisma). The character is treated as being 95% of its race's maximum age.

Lesser Blood Frenzy: At third level, the Rikari gains the ability to enter a lesser blood frenzy once per day. The Rikari must be able to smell blood in order to use this ability; this requires blood to have been shed within the past hour within 40' of the Rikari's present location. The Rikari's own blood does not count. While in a frenzy, the Rikari gains a +4 bonus to dexterity, a +2 dodge bonus to AC, +2 to hit, and -2 to all wisdom-based skill checks. If the Rikari does not perform a Lifedraw before the end of the frenzy, the Rikari is exhausted when the frenzy ends. The frenzy lasts for five rounds plus the Rikari's constitution modifier.

Pallor: At level 3, the Rikari begins to take on an unusual appearance. The Rikari's skin pales into the lightest shade that its race can have. This may not necessarily be white. The Rikari's hair also changes color, matching whatever hair color a very old member of their race would have (for humans, gray or silver). Identifying a Rikari as a member of the class is a DC 10 knowledge: religion check.

Hardened Weapon: At level 3, the Rikari's bonded weapon becomes more durable. It adds twice the Rikari's class level to its hardness, and applies its hardness against attacks that would normally ignore it, including but not limited to adamantine weapons and acid damage.

Ability Score Increase: At level 4, and every three levels after, the Rikari gains a +1 inherent bonus to strength, dexterity, and constitution, as the spell Wish can grant. This maxes out at level 13, at a +4 bonus to each attribute.

Sunlight Vulnerability: After reaching level 4, for every minute spent in sunlight, the Rikari must succeed on a DC 20 fortitude save or take one point of constitution damage.

Deathless Frenzy: At level 5, the Rikari can no longer die while in the grip of a blood frenzy. Damage is still accrued, but short of complete disintegration, decapitation, or dismemberment, the Rikari will continue to fight on until the frenzy ends.

Heightened Senses: At level 5, the Rikari gains a +2 bonus to Spot, Listen, Search, and Survival checks. This bonus improves by one point every even level after fifth, to a total of +7 at level 14.

Incredible Metabolism: At level 5, the Rikari's biological processes go into overdrive. While the Rikari does not age, he now requires 50% more food than normal and does not treat poison or diseases normally. On being poisoned, the Rikari takes the poison's secondary damage on a failed fortitude save one round later instead of one minute later. On being diseased, the incubation period and ability damage intervals are cut down to minutes instead of days. This can cause a Rikari to go through a full bout of the flu in five minutes.

Blood Frenzy: At sixth level, the Rikari's blood frenzy becomes more powerful. For the duration of the frenzy, the Rikari gains fast healing 10 and the Rikari's critical threat range is increased by 1, in addition to +6 to dexterity, a +4 dodge bonus to armor class, +4 to hit, and -4 to wisdom-based skill checks.

Soul Decay: At seventh level, the Rikari's unnatural acts begin to take a toll on his soul. If slain, he can no longer be the target of Raise Dead or Reincarnate. Higher level spells still work. This penalty is not lost when the Rikari enters withdrawal.

Living Weapon: When the Rikari reaches level seven, the Rikari's bonded weapon begins to develop a personality of its own. The weapon has a telepathic bond with the wielder while drawn, but has no other means of communication. It has the same mental scores and alignment as its owner; calculate the item's ego score normally. The Rikari's bonded weapon never disagrees with its true owner, instead endeavoring to always assist. The weapon retains its special qualities if the Rikari goes into withdrawal and/or removes the curse.

Scent: At level eight, the Rikari gains the ability to track by scent.

Diamond Weapon: At ninth level, the Rikari's bonded weapon adds triple the Rikari's class level to its hardness, instead of double. The weapon's hardness still applies in all situations.

Involuntary Frenzy: At ninth level, the Rikari's heightened senses work against him by making him hypersensitive to the smell of blood. On smelling fresh blood as defined in the Lesser Frenzy ability, the Rikari must succeed on a DC 25 will save or enter frenzy. He is not compelled to attack anyone.

Evasion: At tenth level and higher, a Rikari can avoid even magical and unusual attacks with great agility. If she makes a successful Reflex saving throw against an attack that normally deals half damage on a successful save, she instead takes no damage. Evasion can be used only if the Rikari is wearing light armor or no armor. A helpless Rikari does not gain the benefit of evasion. If the Rikari already had Evasion from another class, the Rikari gains Improved Evasion instead.

Silver Vulnerability: At tenth level and higher, a Rikari takes one point of strength damage when hit with a silver weapon. Unlike normal ability damage, this damage regenerates at a rate of one point per round.

Savage Frenzy: At eleventh level and higher, the Rikari gains a free intimidate check against all opponents capable of seeing him when he enters his Blood Frenzy.

Turn Vulnerability: At level twelve, the Rikari is susceptible to being turned as if he were a true undead creature. Double the Rikari's class levels to determine his effective hit dice as an undead creature. Rikari can not be actually destroyed or commanded by turning, only repelled or rebuked.

Drawing Critical: At level twelve, on a natural twenty only, a Rikari deals 1d4 points of constitution damage. The Rikari is healed five points of damage per point of constitution damage inflicted. If the Rikari is exhausted, he is now fatigued. If the Rikari is fatigued, he is no longer fatigued.

Soul Rot: At level thirteen, the Rikari's soul is so thoroughly damaged by its acts that only the greatest of powers can return him from the dead. Only wish or miracle can resurrect a fallen Rikari of level thirteen or more.

Greater Weapon Bond: It is no longer possible to disarm the Rikari if he and his weapon do not wish to be parted. He can summon the weapon to his hand instantaneously from up to ten feet away; the weapon will make up to one attack on anything in the intervening space in order to get to him. He always knows what direction the weapon is so long as he and it are both on the same plane of existance. The weapon is now considered an artifact as far as attempts to destroy it.

Peerless Blood Frenzy: The Rikari enters a state of concentration unmatched by all other mortal creatures. He gains fast healing 20, +2 to his critical threat range, a +10 bonus to dexterity, a +6 dodge bonus to AC, +6 to hit, +20' to his movement rate, and an extra attack at full attack bonus with either full-round or standard action attacks. However, his concentration on the foes he knows of limits his perceptions; in addition to a -8 penalty to wisdom-based skill checks, he must succeed on a DC 25 spot check to even notice any new enemies arriving who have not directly influenced him in combat yet.

Soul Transference: On death, the Rikari's body is no longer able to be resurrected. Instead, the Rikari's soul transfers into the Rikari's bonded weapon, merging with the personality already within the blade. The bonded weapon's ego score increases by 5; any wielder who fails the ego check by more than ten is considered to be dead, with the Rikari taking over their body and being completely reborn. The Rikari gains the physical attributes of the new body, then applies the normal ability score gains from levelling up as well as the inherent bonuses from the Rikari class. If the weapon is left quiescent, when next picked up it inflicts a terrible toll on the new user. The new user goes into a violent, murderous rage for one month per century that the weapon has not been used to draw life.

2007-08-06, 06:36 PM
heck, if you've already gone 15 levels why not the last 5 and make it a whole class? i mean i've never seen a prestige class with more than 10.

2007-08-06, 06:56 PM
Nor have I. i thought I'd seen it all with that seven level one.... *shudder*

2007-08-06, 06:57 PM
heck, if you've already gone 15 levels why not the last 5 and make it a whole class? i mean i've never seen a prestige class with more than 10.
I've seen them with 14.

But then, other than the magic weapon, a Fighter, Barbarian, or Ranger can enter this at 3rd. A Sorcerer at 6th.

You might want to raise the skill or BAB requirements a tad.

2007-08-06, 07:50 PM
Good call. Since I made it lock into the class, then if someone hits level 18 after entering at level 3...then what?

And I've never seen a fifteen-level PrC either. I started it out as a base class, then changed my mind partway through. I don't like empty levels, and wanted to make sure that few of the levels were ALL negative traits.

2007-08-06, 07:52 PM
i do like the soul transferrance idea though, it offers interesting oppurtunities for development after level 15 in a non-epic campaign, you could go adventuring for new hosts, like an ent or something other vaugely humanoid shaped.

D Knight
2007-08-06, 09:46 PM
i am only goning to say this once. SUPERCHARGED VEGOMATIC thats been pumped up! but total sweet consder yoinked in afew days.

2007-08-06, 11:01 PM
I've seen 15 level prestige classes. Alternate ways of doing Bards, Paladins, and Rangers mostly. (Unearthed Arcana)

I think Holy Liberator in Complete Divine had 15 levels too.

2007-08-10, 12:19 PM
Ok, enough about it being a 15-level prestige class. How balanced/unbalanced does it look?

I added in Drawing Critical at level 12. Maybe I'll put in something similar at a lower level, or a few points of fast healing that are always on. As is, they have a lot of disadvantages that always run, but other than the attribute bonuses, if they're not in frenzy they don't have much in combat.

2007-08-10, 12:31 PM
You did a really good job with this, but...
It seems overpowered for some reason?
I don't know why, it just doesn't want to work in my mind.

2007-08-10, 12:56 PM
Very good job. A couple questions though...

Does "Pallor" have any mechanical effects? If not, it should be in the flavor text, not the Special column. I'd suggest a -1 diplomacy penalty, or something minor like that, if you need something for it.

Regarding aging. After the Youth ability is gained, can the Rikari essentially live forever (assuming it can use the Lifedraw feature once a month)? Or does it still die when the base creature's maximum age is reached? Does the character revert to "actual age" if the Rikari abilities are lost?

The only feature that I'd consider overpowered would be the Drawing Critical ability at Level 12. As it stands, a Rikari with a Keen Rapier could be utter devastation several times a round. I would propose two possible fixes. One, make it like a Vorpal weapon, only activating on a natural 20. Two, make it a constitution penalty, rather than damage.

EDIT: One last nitpick. In 3.5, Partial Actions no longer exist. I think Standard Action is the wording you want.

2007-08-10, 02:27 PM
Thanks for the feedback. I honestly don't know how powerful or lacking it is.

Hmm. By partial action, I meant an action limitation as per zombies. I was sure that was how it was labeled, but you're right. Single action per round. I'll change that right away.

The Youth feature does grant potential eternal life, so long as the Rikari continuously finds people to kill. Think of it as a "Melee Lich" kind of thing; after all, true undeath for a fighter class has serious drawbacks, one of which is the loss of the constitution attribute. Amending the Youth entry to indicate aging on loss of class abilities...

Pallor means that anyone who knows about Rikari can identify them instantly as long as no disguise has been enacted. Added a knowledge check DC to identify the class; that means that a character can know the class's weaknesses every five points they beat the check by.

As for draining critical, yeah, a natural 20 is probably best.