A Monster for Every Season: Summer 2
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    Dwarf in the Playground
    Join Date
    Sep 2010
    Gender
    Male

    Default The Pugilist [3.5 Base Class]

    Because everyone tries to fix the monk, I decided to make a variant. A straight-up, no-nonsense unarmed fighter that is going to quite simply brutally crush his targets. No Zen, no Wuxia, no 'Crane Strikes Swift and True' crap. Just pure, sheer brutality applied on the target's face via fist or knee.

    Pugilist
    Pugilist are people focused on becoming the best unarmed fighters they can be. Unlike monks however they do not care about some foolishness called chi or balance. They care and focus only on beating the enemy as fast and efficiently as possible. While monks certainly have a lot of power few can stand up to a capable pugilist in terms of raw fighting strength.
    Adventures: Pugilists adventure mostly in order to improve themselves. They may or may not care about riches or doing good deeds but their main focus is always self improvement by fighting strong enemies and pushing themselves to their limits so they can become even better.
    Characteristics: Pugilists are martial artists and very good at what they do. They focus on unarmed attacks mostly since its a more 'personal' way of fighting and one that depends solely on one's strength, even though they learn to use at least a few basic weapons. While all pugilists focus on unarmed attacks their styles might differ greatly, so it is not easy to predict what your enemy might do. Also many pugilists learn, and later master more than one fighting style so they can have more options in combat as well as make their attacks even more difficult to predict.
    Alignment: Pugilists do not tend to any specific alignement as a total. However since most care about their martial prowess first and foremost it is rare to see one on an extreme alignment such as chaotic evil or lawful good.
    Religion: Pugilists don't care much about religion. While this doesn't mean they worship no gods or that they despise them, they simply believe true power and perfection doesn't come from an outside power but rather you have to work for it with your own two hands.
    Background: Most pugilists come from martial schools where they learned to fight. Others yet come from monk temples where they learned the basics and then set out to perfect their styles. Others still are self-taught people who learned to fight on the street or in tournaments. As such it is difficult to say exactly where a pugilist's training stems from unless you see him/her in action.
    Races: All races can learn martial arts if they spend the time and effort to do so. As such it is common amongst humans and some dwarves and elves but quite rare amongst halflings and the bestial races.
    Other Classes: Pugilists get along well with fighters and barbarians while they have mixed feelings about monks. They see spellcasters as being weak and needing to call on outside forces because they don't have the power to get the job done on their own.
    Role: Pugilists can easily fill the place of any melee combatant but tend not to be as good in ranged combat. However they are quite fast on their feet and that means they can catch up with their enemies fast enough to beat them to a pulp.
    Vital Stats: A Pugilist needs great physical prowess, but some of them can be quite quick on their wit as well. Still, Strength is their most vital stat, followed by Constitution and Dexterity, as they need a lot of physical strength to use some of their most powerful abilities.


    {table]Class Level|Base Attack Bonus|Fort|Ref|Will|Special
    1st|1|2|2|0|Stunning Fist, Flurry of Blows, Expert Defence
    2nd|2|3|3|0|Expose Weakness, Exploit Weakness
    3rd|3|3|3|1|Fast Movement (10ft), Evasion
    4th|4|4|4|1|Inner Strength, Ki Strike
    5th|5|4|4|1|Stone Palm
    6th|6\1|5|5|2|Poison Resistance, Fast Movement (20ft)
    7th|7\2|5|5|2|Earthshaker
    8th|8\3|6|6|2|Deadened Nerves (1/-)
    9th|9\4|6|6|3|Deflect Arrows, Improved Evasion, Fast Movement (30ft)
    10th|10\5|7|7|3|Iron Palm
    11th|11\6\1|7|7|3|Greater Flurry, Deadened Nerves (2/-), Sweat It Out
    12th|12\7\2|8|8|4|Fast Movement (40ft)
    13th|13\8\3|8|8|4|Aftershock
    14th|14\9\4|9|9|4|Deadened Nerves (3/-)
    15th|15\10\5|9|9|5|Steel Palm, Fast Movement (50ft)
    16th|16\11\6\1|10|10|5|
    17th|17\12\7\2|10|10|5|Deadened Nerves (4/-), Timeless Body
    18th|18\13\8\3|11|11|6|Fast Movement (60ft)
    19th|19\14\9\4|11|11|6|
    20th|20\15\10\5|12|12|6|Deadened Nerves (5/-), Second Wind[/table]
    HD: D10
    Skill Points: 4+Intelligence Modifier (x4 at first level)
    Class Skills: Craft, Jump, Balance, Climb, Swim, Profession, Ride, Tumble, Concentration, Escape Artist, Intimidation, Survival


    Weapons and Armor Proficiency: A pugilist gains proficiency with no armors or shield and the following weapons: all simple weapons, Jian (treat as longsword), butterfly knives, kama, Kwan Dao, Hero Lei-Kwei Axe, Sai, Siangham, Nunchaku and Cestus (punch knives). Weapons marked as 'monk' are also on the proficiency list and can be used with Flurry of Blows.

    Stunning Fist: A pugilist gains the Stunning Fist feat for free at first level.

    Flurry of Blows: As per monk ability of the same name. The pugilist may make an extra attack by taking a -2 penalty to his attack bonus. At 9th level, the penalty is reduced to -1 and he may make a second extra attack by adding a -5 to the attack bonus of all attacks that round. At level 11, he gains greater flurry, removing the penalties. Unlike a monk, these attacks can be applied even in actions that would normally only allow a single attack, such as a charge attack or attack of opportunity.

    Unarmed Strike: The pugilist gains the Improved Unarmed Strike for free at first level and improves upon it. At first level it deals 1D6 points of damage (for normal size pugilists) which improves by one step at level 3 and every third level above it.

    Expert Defence: The pugilist is a master of avoiding blows that would otherwise take him down. He may add his Wisdom modifier (if positive) to his AC

    as an insight bonus. Alternatively (chosen at first level and may not change thereafter), he may double his dexterity bonus to AC, but it would not affect him if he is caught flatfooted. Wearing armor (even light) removes these benefits.

    Expose Weakness: The pugilist knows that, to draw out a fight is to learn more about your enemy. He may choose to deal half damage with an unarmed strike, in order to expose a weakness of his enemy. An exposed weakness gives the enemy a -2 to attack bonus or armor class, at the user's choice. Additionally, the pugilist receives a +2 on all DCs he forces upon his exposed target per weakness. He may only expose a number of weakness upon his target equal to his class level divided by 4, or wisdom modifier, whichever is less. You may only expose weaknesses to one opponent. If you switch to another, you loose the exposed weaknesses on the first target.

    Exploit Weakness: The pugilist may strike down his enemy with little trouble if he has learned of his weaknesses. By expending all expose weakness
    'tokens', he may initiate a brutal and devastating assault on his enemy. It is a free action that affects the pugilist until his next turn. In that duration, he may not use Expose Weakness and looses all the bonuses it grants. However, the pugilist gains a +3 to Attack Bonus and +1D6 damage per exposed weakness to all the attacks he makes to his opponent. Penalties that were placed before using Expose Weakness (such as stuns that would have failed were it not for the increase in DC) remain even though the tokens themselves do not. Additionally, he gains an additional +2 per exposed weakness spent to all strength-related checks against his opponent.

    Fast Movement: It is imperative for a fighter to close in on his enemies, lest they strike him down from afar. The pugilist gains the listed amount of speed to his base land speed (which may translate to flight speed of course).

    Evasion: The Pugilist has long since learned the best way to not receive damage in combat; to simply dodge the heck out of there. Henceforth, in any effect that would call for a reflex save for half damage, the pugilist completely ignores the effect if he succeeds the save.

    Inner Strength: Once per day per five levels, the Pugilist may call on his tremendous inner strength to help him fight. For one round he is considered to be hasted and receives a +2 to all physical-related checks or saves. Additionally, he may substitute his Fortitude for his Will save if struck by a mind-affecting spell and may roll another save to break free of any such effects he was under before he used his inner strength. Doing so is tiring however and after the fight is over, he is fatigued. If used twice in a combat, he is fatigued right after the second use and exhausted at the end. If used three times, he is considered to be exhausted at the end of the third round and must roll a fortitude save DC 20+ the rounds of combat or fall unconscious for as long as it would take for him to recover from exhaustion to fatigue. Even then he is considered exhausted. If, for whatever reason, he uses that ability a fourth time in a single combat or similar encounter, he must immidiately roll after the end of the round or die of heart failure. Even if he succeeds, he will fall unconscious at the end of the round (not combat) until such a time he could recover. If the pugilist possesses Deadened Nerves, he doubles the amount of damage reduction from that ability but not any other form of damage reduction for the duration of his Inner Strength.

    Ki Strike: The Pugilist's attacks are so terrifyingly effective that they count against a creature's damage reduction. At fourth level, his attacks with all weapons he is proficient with are considered to be magical for purposes of damage reduction. At 8th level, this increases to alignment and at 12th his attacks are considered to be made of adamantine. Finally, at level 18 it is considered to be Cold Iron or Silver, as befits the situation.

    Stone Palm: The Pugilist deals half-again his damage in sundering attempts and ignores half the hardness.

    Poison Resistance: The Pugilist gains his class level in fortitude saves to resist poisons and infections.

    Earth Shaker: The Pugilist may stomp the earth with such strength, it can literally knock everyone around him down by spending a Stunning Fist use. Treat this as a trip attempt against all in a 5ft radius. Alternatively, the Pugilist may ignore the Armor or Natural Armor orShield bonuses of his target (but not enhancement bonuses that exist because of magical shields or armor).

    Break Through: The pugilist may roll his Strength score to remain unaffected by otherwise limiting conditions, such as a web spell or even a wall.

    Deadened Nerves: The Pugilist becomes tougher than nails, having long since learned to ignore pain and damage. He gains Damage Reduction 1/- or increases his already existing damage reduction by that amount. Every time he receives this ability, he gains an extra 1/- to his damage reduction.

    Deflect Arrows: The Pugilist gains the Deflect Arrows feat for free, even if he doesn't meet the prerequisites.

    Iron Palm: The pugilist deals two times his normal damage in sundering attempts and ignores the hardness.

    Quick Step: The Pugilist learns that to close in on his opponent is imperative. He may perform an effect similar to the Dimension Slip power once per hour, with the exception that it is movement and not teleportation, meaning that he can't go through wall except via his Break Through ability.

    Improved Evasion: The Pugilist seems to faze out of reality when things get rough, allowing him to receive half damage from effects even if he fails his reflex save and ignore them completely if he succeeds.

    Sweat It Out: If something ever gets past the Pugilist's immunization system, he can simply sweat it out with a single round of strenuous activity (such as combat). He completely resists any nonmagical poison or disease and gains a second roll to resist magical ones. He can re-roll every round he is in strenuous activity. Additionally, if the poison or disease was tranferred by touch, he is instantly considered to have coated his unarmed attack with said poison or infection.

    Aftershock: When using the Earth Shaker ability, the Pugilist may make an opposed strength check to push those affected five feet away from him for every three points he surpasses his target's roll. For every five feet travelled this way, he deals an extra 1D6 points of damage. Size modifiers to the strength check are halved as far as Aftershock is concerned.

    Steel Palm: The Pugilist may simply make a strength check if he wishes to sunder an item even in combat. Also, his unarmed attacks can now deal piercing or slashing damage.

    Timeless Body: The pugilist's single-minded pursuit of martial capability has led him to a great discovery; It's the mind that controls the body. Therefore, he no longer accrues penalties when aging, though unlike other classes, he will look his true age. He still dies when his time is up however.

    Second Wind: Once per day, if the Pugilist would be knocked unconscious but not dead or under 25% of his hit points, he receives his second wind. He is restored to full health and healed of all non-magical effects (both beneficial and not). He is granted another save for each magical effect affecting him (he may choose whether to roll or not, skipping beneficial effects).


    This is a class that, paradoxically enough, fights smartly. First, you beat up your enemy, exposing his weaknesses. Then, in a sudden burst of damage, you wipe the floor with his face. Contrary to other classes however, he requires a bit of thought, deciding if he should cash out his exposed weaknesses now and hope for an instant kill or save them for later and guarantee it?

    Hope you like it and, as always, critique is welcomed.

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