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    Default Werewolf Paragon (3.5, paragon class)

    Just a random idea I wanted to try out. A racial paragon class (Unearthed Arcana) for characters with lycanthropy (specifically werewolves).

    Fluff (i.e. that sugary filling that we donít really need but tastes so good)
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    Before I begin I should note that in my games true lycanthropes can be of any alignment, and true werewolves alignment is either Often Chaotic Evil or based on their base race, itís just that the evil aligned ones tend to make bigger headlines, that and humans donít like werewolves much do to afflicted members, their ability to afflict the curse, and their ability to pretend to be a normal human. I guess itís like the alignment section of the lycanthrope template says, they get alignments based on how people perceive the base animal and I personally see wolves as rather noble and as definitely lawful (pack hunters and all); so the fluff will probably reflect that.
    I am also using the assumption that the base race is human. A dwarf or elf werewolf paragon will be very different, just like a dwarf or elf werewolf.

    Werewolves balance the wild nature of the wolf with what it is to be a man. Most think of infected beasts, little more than mad dogs, when they hear werewolf. This is true of those afflicted with a curse, and even many born with the power are beings driven purely by rage and bloodlust. They are far from all, though, and many werewolves can be in fact quite noble. Sometimes a werewolf arises who is somewhat more of a werewolf. These paragons can plunge into the absolute deepest depths of rage and bloodlust becoming little more than unthinking monsters, or can become the leaders of noble packs of their kin leading them to live in secret harmony with nearby humans.
    Adventures: A werewolf paragon will usually find themselves on the road of adventure. Their wolf nature makes them uncomfortable in human settlements, even when they can find themselves accepted. Even amongst werewolf tribes a werewolf paragon feels the urge to be alpha and many will go off to find or found their own pack, becoming adventurers in the interim. As adventurers they find their perfect environment: on the battlefield they find an outlet to their internal rage and bloodlust that sometimes threatens to overwhelm them; the small size of an adventuring party allows them the comfort of a group without the limitations of society, and allows them to form a temporary synthetic pack; they are free from the dominance of an alpha and able to make decisions on their own or as equals.
    Characteristics: Werewolf paragons have a strong sense of self. They tend to have a deeply placed understanding of their place in any given group and an ambition to rise to alpha or at least the equal of any and all others in their group. They are plagued constantly by an internal bloodlust caused by disharmony between the wolf and man but they strive always to rise above it. They are quick and cunning able to work in a group and use tactics effectively, but they are also independent and resentful of orders. They have the bodies and instincts of a wild beast, predicting attacks and struggling onwards through the battlefield. Werewolf paragons are proud and many seek to find a harmony between wolf and man, something that (in their eyes at least) their common brethren fail to do.
    Alignment: Werewolf paragons have a strong desire for freedom and tend towards chaotic. On the other hand there are those that fully embrace the idea of the pack, seeing it as an entity far greater than oneself and something to be put before even their own life, which lean strongly towards lawful. Morally most are neutral, seeing giving in to the bloodlust and rage that many of their lesser brethren fall prey to as a sign of weakness, some even overcome their natural arrogance to be truly good creatures. Even so some fall into the depths of rage; these tend to be the evilest of all werewolves.
    Religion: The plurality of werewolf paragons care little for deities instead focusing on this world and their own personal completion. Those that do turn to the gods often turn to gods of nature or those that represent perfection or harmony of body and mind.
    Races: Werewolf paragons tend to see humans as tainted by civilization, and most of their kin as tainted by rage. Some find a better fit with elves, but even these are never truly wild and given time will chafe on the werewolf paragon. They cannot fathom dwarves whose society is closer knit than human, but who can also bear it naturally. Halflings are seen as a curious creature, with their simplistic life styles and looser, casual societies. Orcs are often seen as similar to their own kin, living a natural life but so filled with rage and bloodlust to be disgusting; some werewolf paragons will take an orc tribe as their ďpackĒ, with them as the alpha of course, and these orc ďpacksĒ can be a truly terrifying threat to human societies nearby.
    Other Classes: Werewolf paragons get along well with rangers, who blend martial prowess with an intimate knowledge of the natural world. They respect fighters (or warblades) for their self-discipline and power in combat, and can empathize with barbarians although these mighty warriors range from those who can properly channel their rage and those who are consumed by it. Paladins (of Justice) tend to be too stuck up and bossy for their tastes. Monks are respected for their self-discipline, although their attempts at unarmed combat seems a paltry imitation of the sheer fury of a beast. Druids are respected and revered both for their abilities with magic and their harmonious relation with nature. Clerics are often distrusted, smelling of things not of this world. They prefer sorcerers to wizards, the natural magic of the former seeming more natural than the slowly studied tomes of the latter. Rogues, and to a lesser extent bards, are respected as skilled partners, who just like them value their freedom and individuality.



    Prerequisites:
    Must be a werewolf.

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

    1st|
    +1
    |
    +2
    |
    +2
    |
    +2
    |Powerful Natural Weapons, Fast Movement, Quick Shift

    2nd|
    +2
    |
    +3
    |
    +3
    |
    +3
    |Uncanny Dodge, Improved DR, Wolf's Flank

    3rd|
    +3
    |
    +3
    |
    +3
    |
    +3
    |Deadly Natural Weapons, Fast Healing 2, +2 Str[/table]

    HD type: d10.

    Class Skills: Climb (Str), Handle Animal (Cha), Hide (Dex), Intimidate (Cha), Jump (Str), Listen (Wis), Move Silently (Dex), Spot (Wis), Survival (Wis)

    Skill points per level: 4 + Int modifier

    Powerful Natural Weapons: Your claws and bite attacks deal damage as if you were one size category larger. For example if you are a medium werewolf you would deal 1d6 damage with your claws and 1d8 with your bite.

    Fast Movement: When in hybrid or wolf form and wearing medium or lighter armor and not carrying a heavy load, your base land speed increases by 10-ft (i.e. to 60-ft).

    Quick Shift: You may now change to or from your animal or hybrid form as a swift action instead of as a standard action.

    Uncanny Dodge: At 2nd level a werewolf paragon's reflexes and senses become sharp enough that it is almost impossible to catch them defenseless. This ability works like the barbarian ability of the same name. If you already have Uncanny Dodge, or would gain it from another source, you instead get Improved Uncanny Dodge.

    Improved DR: At 2nd level a werewolf paragon's DR in wolf and hybrid form increases by 5 (from 10 to 15/silver). They also gain DR 5/silver in their human (or other base creature) form.

    Wolf's Flank: At 2nd level a werewolf paragon learns how to use the pack tactics of a wolf against his foes. When flanking an enemy a werewolf paragon does +4 damage with melee attacks and gains a +2 bonus on checks made to trip opponents in addition to the normal bonuses from flanking.

    Deadly Natural Weapons: At 3rd level the damage from a werewolf paragon's claws and bite attacks increases further. You are now treated as two size categories larger for the purposes of claw and bite damage. This supersedes (does not stack with) Powerful Natural Weapons. For example a medium-sized werewolf paragon would deal 1d8 damage with each claw and 2d6 damage with their bite attack.

    Fast Healing 2: At 3rd level the regenerative capabilities of a werewolf paragon improves to such an extent that they gain fast healing 2 when in wolf or hybrid form.

    +2 Str: At 3rd level a werewolf paragon's Str increases by 2 in all three forms.



    So what do you think? Is a 2d6 bite attack too good? What about 3d6 with Improved Natural Weapon feat? Little worried they get too many abilities, but their first level abilities are either almost useless (fast movement), not likely to come up in combat (quick shift as they will usually be in hybrid form before battle anyway), to just trying to keep up (claw damage buff), only the increase to bite damage is likely to be used.
    2nd level they get a little more useful things. Uncanny Dodge is really good, but it's also rather easily available on melee builds. How good is Improved DR, and Wolf's Flank? I wanted to give them something interesting and unique, but it just seems to be a kind of small flat bonus.
    3rd level they get the standard paragon +2 to a stat and two more abilities which might be a bit much. Deadly Natural Weapons is a minor increase to claw damage which for a melee character still leaves their claws doing next to no damage, the worry is that it also increases their bite and makes it that much more useful as free attack in addition to their normal routine. Fast Healing represents part of the werewolf nature that is often neglected in D&D, how fast they heal. I was thinking about capping it at half health, or making silver (and maybe fire) damage stop it from functioning for a few rounds.
    Balancing this is that it can only be taken by werewolves which already have 2 racial hit dice and +3 LA so that after this they're missing 8 levels in other classes. This also means that instead of being Lv 1, 2, and 3 abilities (like most paragon classes) these are level 6, 7, and 8 abilities which should be better.
    Well playground that's it, so please tell me what you think about it. Thanks in advance.
    Last edited by Zaydos; 2010-08-01 at 02:00 AM.
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    BlackDragon

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    Default Re: Werewolf Paragon (3.5, paragon class)

    does Wolf's flank stack with normal flanking attacks?
    call me Dragon

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    Default Re: Werewolf Paragon (3.5, paragon class)

    Yes it does, I will edit the original post to clarify. Thanks for asking.

    Also just remembered I forgot to reserve a post for the fluff (d'oh). That's what happens when I take a four hour break in the middle of writing a post.
    Last edited by Zaydos; 2010-07-31 at 10:43 PM.
    Peanut Half-Dragon Necromancer by Kurien.

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    Default Re: Werewolf Paragon (3.5, paragon class)

    Okay, added the fluff. It's not particularly well written, but it gives a feel for what I see the class as and where it would be placed in my worlds. So say what you want about the mechanics (should I cap fast healing at half-health? do they get too much at Lv 2? should I change the Wolf Tactics? etc) or the fluff (your idea of werewolves is completely wrong why is it self contradictory? what do they think of duskblades? they should like clerics because... etc). I value your opinions playgrounders.
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    Default Re: Werewolf Paragon (3.5, paragon class)

    I like it! I like it quite a bit. I'd increase the will save to good, however; the werewolf lord has good will saves, I don't see why this shouldn't. And 2d6 for a bite attack is in no way overpowered.
    Also... I'd make the improved DR +5 instead of +3. Don't worry, that won't make it overpowered, but 15 is so much more of a nice, round number than 13.
    Otherwise, good job! I'm keeping this one.
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    Default Re: Werewolf Paragon (3.5, paragon class)

    Thanks. I considered the DR and decided it was more like normal classes to get 3, although when I stop and think about that the only time I've gotten DR has been warlock with fey heritage and fey skin to get it so that might be why. As for the will save I gave them the same base saves as animals, the werewolf lord has a good will save because it uses a dire wolf as the base animal (dire animals have good will saves, why the disparity I don't know). I think I'll go ahead and up the DR to 15, and see if anyone seconds the better Will saves, it would fit with lycanthropes getting Iron Will as a bonus feat and I doubt it would be mechanically broken (just help keep their saves up with the loss of 3 HD).
    Peanut Half-Dragon Necromancer by Kurien.

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    Default Re: Werewolf Paragon (3.5, paragon class)

    Quote Originally Posted by Zaydos View Post
    Thanks. I considered the DR and decided it was more like normal classes to get 3, although when I stop and think about that the only time I've gotten DR has been warlock with fey heritage and fey skin to get it so that might be why. As for the will save I gave them the same base saves as animals, the werewolf lord has a good will save because it uses a dire wolf as the base animal (dire animals have good will saves, why the disparity I don't know). I think I'll go ahead and up the DR to 15, and see if anyone seconds the better Will saves, it would fit with lycanthropes getting Iron Will as a bonus feat and I doubt it would be mechanically broken (just help keep their saves up with the loss of 3 HD).
    Also, consider that many taking the class might be werewolf lords, and certainly any who take the class would probably use the monster class on the wizards site to advance to werewolf lord.
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    Default Re: Werewolf Paragon (3.5, paragon class)

    Quote Originally Posted by Gorgondantess View Post
    Also, consider that many taking the class might be werewolf lords, and certainly any who take the class would probably use the monster class on the wizards site to advance to werewolf lord.
    Didn't know there was a monster class on the wizards site. I was mostly going off the werewolf monster class from Dragon Magazine (issue 312 I think). Okay that's more of a reason to give them good Will, plus it works with my fluff
    Peanut Half-Dragon Necromancer by Kurien.

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    Default Re: Werewolf Paragon (3.5, paragon class)

    On the one hand, it's far more powerful than most 5 level PrCs, in only 3 levels. On the other hand, as a werewolf you've lost at least 4 class levels (2 from racial HD and two from afflicted LA). If you're using werewolves by the book, it should be fine, though it could get messy if used with those that have been houseruled into not sucking.

    I'd actually suggest making it longer, up to 10 levels. The idea would be a prestige class that most lycanthropes can enter either immediately after their racial hit dice, or after just a few levels of some other combat class, and then be a prestige lycanthrope for the rest of the game. I suppose there's always Warshaper to stack on top of it.
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    Default Re: Werewolf Paragon (3.5, paragon class)

    That's exactly where the rub of the problem is. I want to keep it 3 levels since mostly it was just a thought experiment to make a paragon class for werewolves, and on that same basis I made it for RAW werewolves. I know it's stronger than the other paragon classes, but they also said that higher ECL races should have stronger paragons so that's why I've been extra nervous about its balance. Do you think I should scale the Will save back to poor and/or remove one or two of the abilities?

    I don't think I'll stretch this to a 10 level class, for the above reasons, but I might start working on one now; only problem is keeping the abilities thematically appropriate while keeping it open to all lycanthropes.
    Peanut Half-Dragon Necromancer by Kurien.

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    Default Re: Werewolf Paragon (3.5, paragon class)

    I think it's fine. Fast healing 2 is good but won't change combat, just between combat healing, and DR 10-15/silver is easily paid for by LA +2-3. Natural weapon increases are worth a few levels of abilities, and fast movement/flanking/uncanny dodge are pretty similar to what you could get as a barbarian. Changing forms as a swift action shouldn't change combat, since the game already assumes you'll be in hybrid form for maximum power all the time, which means all it does is let you actually take human form when you want to. I think it does just what you want it to, giving you a few levels worth of abilities plus enough extra abilities to make up for your horrendous dead levels.

    And after looking the Warshaper back up, wow, that would be pretty much the perfect class to go into after this. You'd qualify instantly between your wolf hit dice and paragon BAB, and you'd get another size increase on your weapons, 2 more points of fast healing, and more strength and constitution and immunities. Warshaper was already amazing, but since the werewolf paragon is basically warshaper light, it really shines in combination. Not that it makes you any less of a one trick pony, as you're still basically just a tough full attacking fightery guy, but lets you keep doing that in werewolf style. Hmm, stack those together and then use Combat Vigor-> fast healing 7 total, now there's something useful...

    For making a longer version applicable to all lycanthropes, I don't think there's much you could do that wouldn't be generic. There isn't really much difference between lycanthropes anyway, just what their stat modifiers are and what size and movement modes they have in animal form. As long as the speed bonuses apply to everything, there's nothing you could give one that wouldn't apply to all the others. If you wanted to add senses, well with the way wolves are often depicted in stories, I don't think you'd have any problem passing them off as gaining blindsense the same as a werebat might improve their blindsense.

    One thing you'll definitely want to give them is pounce, or another form of multiple attacks while moving, and if you want animal forms to ever be used then you'll have to give them extra attacks with single natural weapons. They aren't the best available, but I think the Bounding Assault line of feats from PHBII have potential. Lycanthropes, and werewolves in particular tend to be set up as hit and run attackers, and those will give you both multiple attacks and hit and run in the same package. You'll just have to give them as bonus feats to ignore the ridiculous prerequisites.
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    Default Re: Werewolf Paragon (3.5, paragon class)

    combined whit the wolf fighter and werewolf this are an kickass bulid

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