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    Orc in the Playground

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    Jul 2014

    Default Re: GiTP Prestige Class Contest XLIX: It's Another Race Thing

    Mongrel Paragon
    "I don't know what you mean. I'm just a simple human farmer."
    "I don't know what you mean. I'm just a simple dwarven blacksmith."

    - Jetaros, 5th-level mongrel paragon

    Mongrelfolk live a life between the comfortable societal positions held intuitively by the other humanoid races. Humans have their place, elves have theirs - even half-elves fit in more than an ordinary mongrelfolk. For the mongrel paragon, that's just fine - in fact, they've learned to take advantage of the situation.

    Any mongrelfolk will easily qualify to become a mongrel paragon, though sorcerers, with their lower base attack and limited skill points, may take longer to do so. The class is typically entered by rogues, as they are the mongrelfolk's favored class and have Disguise as a class skill, with plenty of skill points to put into these efforts.

    Race: Mongrelfolk
    BAB: +5
    Skills: Disguise 10 ranks

    Class Skills
    The mongrel paragon's class skills (and the key ability for each skill) are: Appraise (Int), Bluff (Cha), Climb (Str), Craft (Int), Disguise (Cha), Gather Information (Cha), Jump (Str), Knowledge (local), Listen (Wis), Move Silently (Dex), Search (Int), Speak Language (n/a), Spot (Wis), Use Magic Device (Cha)
    Skills Points at Each Level: 6 + int

    Hit Dice: d8

    Level Base Atk
    Bonus language, enhanced poison resistance
    Spell-like abilities 1/day
    Bonus language, superior low-light vision
    Spell-like abilities 3/day, unwavering mind
    Any race, any time; bonus language; spell-like abilities at-will

    Weapon and Armor Proficiencies: Mongrel paragons gain no additional proficiencies

    Bonus Language (Ex): At 1st level, and again at 3rd and 5th levels, a mongrel paragon learns to speak, read, and write one additional language. This language must be one spoken by a significant portion of the civilized or tribal humanoid population in the area the mongrel paragon resides; it cannot be monstrous languages, such as Auran or Celestial, unless they are commonly spoken by humanoids in the area.

    Enhanced Poison Resistance (Ex): A mongrel paragon's racial resistance to poison is increased by his class level.

    Spell-like Abilities (Sp): A mongrel paragon gains the ability to cast a limited number of spells as spell-like abilities. At 2nd level, he can use each spell-like ability once per day; this increases to 3/day at 4th level, and at 5th level, he can use each spell-like ability at will. The list of spells he can use in this way includes: disguise self, ghost sound, reduce person (self only), ventriloquism.

    Superior Low-Light Vision (Ex): At 3rd level, a mongrel paragon's low-light vision improves. The paragon can see four times as far as a human in starlight, moonlight, twilight, and similar conditions of poor illumination.

    Unwavering Mind (Ex): Upon gaining 4th level in this class, a mongrel paragon's natural resistance to enchantment, illusion, and sleep effects improves dramatically. He is forevermore immune to all mind-affecting effects.

    Any Race, Any Time (Su): A 5th-level mongrel paragon fully masters the manipulation of his own bloodlines and the perceptions others have of him. At any time, as a free action that need not be taken on his turn, the paragon can choose which humanoid subtype(s) he possesses (or none, if desired). This affects both direct mechanical effects and roleplaying effects - spells that specifically target or exclude specific races (elves, dwarves, goblinoids, etc.) can be made to include or exclude the paragon as he wishes; as well, a character with a predisposition toward or against certain races will treat the mongrelfolk as if he were an ordinary member of the race he designates. This ability even allows the paragon to gain feats or enter prestige classes that have a race requirement, though he cannot benefit from the feat or class abilities when he no longer meets the prerequisites, as normal. A character that is familiar with the paragon (those who have interacted with the individual under three or more different subtypes, such as his party-mates likely have) see through the ruse automatically. The encompasses and supersedes the mongrelfolk's racial Emulate Race ability.

    Good mongrel paragons just want to fit in in the world, and bring the various races together in harmony. Evil paragons resent their bastard heritage, and seek to use it to upset the current order of society. Above all, a mongrel paragon's abilities are perfectly suited for espionage and infiltration, and regardless of alignment, these characters tend toward this behavior.
    Combat: A mongrel paragon is not especially well-suited to combat, having neither powerful melee or ranged abilities nor offensive spellcasting capabilities. They serve primarily to discourage combat, avoid it altogether, or to manipulate the opponents so their allies gain tactical advantage. A clever mongrel paragon can make use of his ghost sound and ventriloquism abilities to confuse and distract the opponent, reduce person to improve his AC and available hiding spaces, and can rely on his unwavering mind feature to resist powerful enchanters/enchantresses.
    Advancement: Many mongrel paragons choose not to devote all of their attention to the single-minded progression of the class, instead interspersing their paragon levels with additional levels of their original class. This allows them to slowly reap the benefits of realizing their racial power while still advancing the skills and abilities they've grown accustomed to. Many of the abilities gained by the mongrel paragon class can be used to qualify for further prestige classes in the future (especially their capstone ability).
    Resources: Mongrel paragons, despite their beginnings, grow to be well-liked among those who know them well, and at higher levels quite regularly make an impact upon the communities they visit. It is not uncommon for a long-lived paragon to have connections in high places around the world, whether with aristocrats, arcane researchers, clergymen, or even warlords. (Though many of their 'connections' may not know the true identity of the paragon.) If ever in dire straits, a true mongrel paragon knows he can call on his friends, nearby or across the world. If that is not enough, they are also quite adept at using magic devices, which they tend to hoard almost obsessively, knowing that compared to true spellcasters they are somewhat feeble.

    I've known Jetaros a long time. Kind of a strange fellow, 'til you get to know him. Actually, kind of a strange fellow even then. You never quite know what he's thinking, but I've always felt that I can trust him.
    - Samm, 12th-level fighter and Jetaros' best friend (as far as he knows)

    The existence of mongrel paragons is a well-kept secret among the mongrelfolk. This is because, regardless of the mongrelfolk's intent, if the other races learned of the deception, they would presumably react unfavorably. Thus, only mongrelfolk with potential are approached by existing paragons and trained in their ways.
    Deception aside, most mongrel paragons are fairly well-regarded; even the most evil and malicious of them know to keep allies around, and make a point of seeming trustworthy around them. The few paragons who are found out are typically regarded with the same suspicion the common folk have for spellcasters, assuming them to be illusionists (which isn't far off).
    Daily Life: The daily life of a mongrel paragon can vary dramatically. Most paragons end up adventuring, if even just to wander town to town and see what they can get away with. They spend their downtime observing those around them, learning to mimic their mannerisms and trying to decipher the hidden subtext behind etiquette and other social constructs.
    Notables: Obviously, a truly successful mongrel paragon is never known to be such. The greatest hero ever known which happened to be a mongrel paragon was known to all as Flistibble, Shadow of the Sun. Flistibble was, by all appearances, a powerful gnome illusionist/shadowcraft mage, dedicated to the cause of spreading worship of the good-aligned gods, especially Pelor, across the world. He performed 'miracles' across the world, harnessing the power of shadows to enrich the lives of the less fortunate. In regions where gnomes were discriminated against, he portrayed himself as a halfling, half-elf, or similar small-statured humanoid, explaining simply that his reputation was inaccurate (as tales tend to be). Flistibble's greatest enemy was also a mongrel paragon (though neither knew about the other's nature). Zarrand the Corrupt was a mongrelfolk who most often appeared as an orc, troll, or bugbear, and was also a magic user of some kind (the details have been lost to history), who used his dark powers to intimidate entire populations of goblinoids and tribal humanoids into doing his bidding. He lead many sieges and raids against civilized towns, and seemed to particularly delight in taking down places of knowledge and high culture, such as universities. Once Flistibble had rebuilt a couple of the towns devastated by Zarrand's attacks, he dedicated the rest of this career to ending Zarrand's reign of terror. Whatever happened to the two is unknown except by the most privileged of scholars, but it is assumed the two destroyed each other in an epic final personal confrontation.
    Organizations: No organizations exist dedicated specifically to the mongrel paragons. Rumors surface every few years of a Mongrelfolk Cabal, lead by several extraordinarily long-lived individuals, but these rumors have never been substantiated. Mongrel paragons tend to be attracted to the most elite, exclusive organizations that exist. The more chaotic among them revel in the ability to belong to several mutually-exclusive clubs at once, when they can successfully pull it off. Like any other character, paragons may also pursue guilds or similar groups that focus on the advancement of their original class.

    NPC Reaction
    The general population is unaware even of the exploits of notable mongrel paragons like Flistibble and Zarrand. Ordinary commonfolk tend to perceive mongrel paragons in exactly the way the paragon wants them to. The more perceptive of individuals may perceive that something is unusual about the paragon but even so have little solid evidence to pursue accusation; as such, talented paragons enjoy a sort of comfortable existence between the ranks of ordinary citizens.

    A mongrel paragon in the party should not upset the balance of power too much, when playing in an ordinary game. The class is not well-suited to optimization, tending more toward the roleplay-heavy campaigns. NPC mongrel paragons should remain rare, except perhaps in campaigns encompassing a lot of intrigue elements.
    Adaptation: For a higher-powered campaign setting, consider having the mongrel paragon class advance existing class abilities on its even levels. Additionally, the class could be suited for other kinds of in-betweeners or outcast races/characters, such as changelings, with a few tweaks to the abilities that play most specifically off of mongrelfolk.
    Encounters: It is unlikely the PCs will run into a mongrel paragon (and be aware of it, at least). A typical encounter would most likely either be at the end of a string of investigation, or a random encounter between cities or in a dungeon somewhere, where the paragon's class abilities have allowed it to survive unusual circumstances.

    Sample Encounter
    After an extensive investigation spanning three kingdoms, it is finally revealed that the coordinated efforts of several saboteurs were not at the hand of a mysterious cabal, but instead a single individual impersonating several others. After tracking him to his hideout, the party confronts the deceiver.
    EL13: Jetaros appears as a well-dressed elven man of strong build and fine features. He brushes back his cape to reveal a pair of rapiers. Suddenly, behind you, you hear a loud bang.

    CN Male Mongrelfolk Rogue 8 / Mongrel Paragon 5
    Init +2, Senses: Listen +9, Spot +1,
    Languages Common, Elven, Dwarven, Gnome, Goblin, Halfling
    AC 20, touch 12, flat-footed 18 (+2 Dexterity, +7 armor, +1 shield)
    78hp (13HD)
    Fort +6, Ref +12, Will +5; +1 on saving throws against illusions, +6 on saving throws against poison
    Speed 30ft. (6 squares)
    Melee 2 rapiers +12/+7 melee (1d6+4/17-20)
    Base Atk +10, Grp +11
    Atk Options Sneak Attack +4d6
    Combat Gear +5 glamered leather armor, two +3 keen rapiers
    Supernatural Abilities Any Race, Any Time
    Abilities Str 12, Dex 15, Con 12, Int 10, Wis 10, Cha 6
    SQ Diffuse blood, enhanced poison resistance, evasion, improved uncanny dodge, mongrelfolk traits, sound imitation, superior low-light vision, trapfinding, trap sense +2, unwavering mind
    Feats Great Fortitude, Iron Will, Two-Weapon Defense, Two-Weapon Fighting, Weapon Finesse
    Skills Appraise +9, Bluff +14, Climb +1, Disguise +14, Gather Information +6, Hide +14, Jump +1, Knowledge (local) +12, Listen +9, Move Silently +9, Search +9, Sleight of Hand +8, Spot +1 Use Magic Device +14
    Possessions Combat gear plus treasure: half coins, double magic items (scrolls, staffs, and wands only)
    Last edited by ezkajii; 2015-02-23 at 12:38 PM.
    Behold! The Monster Compendium

    My Homebrew.

    78% of DM's started their first campaign in a tavern. If you're one of the 22% that didn't, copy and paste this into your signature.
    Mine started with the intrepid heroes whisked away to a battle gauntlet in the sky by a mystery deity! It was meant to be strictly a playtest but quickly devolved.