Not all harbingers rely on their own strange and eerie powers for travel and speed, some attract an otherworldly companion to bear them on their missions into the world. These mounts in form resemble equine creatures of spectral bone and sinew, some wreathed in manes of ghost-flame with burning hooves and others more nightmarish beasts. Regardless of their form, these harbingers are known as omen riders, for where they ride, calamity follows close behind.
An omen rider is gifted with exceptional equestrian knowledge upon taking up this mantle. At 1st level, she gains Medium Armor Proficiency and Mounted Combat as bonus feats, even if she does not meet their prerequisites. In addition, she gains Ride as a class skill. Finally, an omen rider may trade one of her available disciplines for the Piercing Thunder discipline.
At 1st level, an omen rider gains the ability to call forth a mount composed of spectral bone, ghostly plasm, and ghoulish sinew. This beast is roughly shaped as a heavy horse, sized appropriately for the harbinger. The omen rider can magically call their mount to their side as a full-round action a number of times per day equal to 3 + the omen rider’s initiation modifier. When she does, the mount immediately appears adjacent to the omen rider. The mount can be dismissed as a move action. A spectral steed has insubstantial hooves that make no sound and what seems to be a saddle, bit, and bridle. It does not fight and cannot attack, but other animals shun it and refuse to attack it.
The spectral steed’s AC is equal to the omen rider’s, and it has a number of hit points equal to half her maximum hit points (minimum 10). In addition, it gains the benefits of any miss chances, immunities, and resistances the omen rider has. The spectral steed is not affected by effects that target an area, nor is it vulnerable to effects that do not deal hit point damage. The spectral steed always acts on the omen rider’s initiative. If it loses all its hit points, the spectral steed disappears, but a new one may be summoned if the omen rider desires. A spectral steed has a base land speed of 40 feet at 1st level, which increases by 10 feet at 3rd level and every two levels thereafter (up to a maximum of 100 feet). It can bear its rider’s weight and up to 50 pounds of other equipment, plus another 10 pounds per omen rider level. The spectral steed gains certain powers according to the omen rider’s level. A spectral steed’s abilities include those of mounts of lower levels.
- Starting at 3rd level, the omen rider’s spectral steed can ride over sandy, muddy, or even swampy ground without difficulty or decrease in speed.
- Starting at 6th level, the omen rider’s spectral steed can tread on any liquid as if it were firm ground, as if it were under the effect of a water walk spell.
- At 9th level, the omen rider’s spectral steed gains a fly speed equal to its land speed, with average maneuverability. Its modifier on Fly checks is equal to the omen rider’s initiator level + the omen rider’s initiation modifier.
- Starting at 12th level, the omen rider can conjure her spectral steed beneath her, summoning it and mounting it in the same action. In addition, she can summon her spectral steed as an immediate action.
The omen rider and her spectral steed are so in tune with each other that they can work as one when performing maneuvers. Whenever an omen rider is mounted and uses a maneuver with a movement component (such as making a charge attack, or taking an extra move action), the omen rider can have her spectral steed make the appropriate move action in her place. Both the omen rider and spectral steed gain any benefits from the omen rider’s maneuvers that would normally apply to the initiator (such as resistances, healing, temporary hit points, and the effects of counters). If the maneuver allows the initiator to make a charge attack, both the spectral steed and omen rider are considered to be charging.
Starting at 5th level, when moving through battle or charging down a road, the omen rider and their spectral steed inspire ghostly legends of riders made of smoke and darkness. When the omen rider is mounted on their spectral steed, the omen rider and her mount gain a +2 dodge bonus to their AC and on Reflex saves. In any round where the spectral steed moves at least 20 feet, both the omen rider and her mount gain a 20% miss chance against attacks. Ghost touch weapons and effects that can affect incorporeal creatures normally ignore this miss chance.
Starting at 10th level, the determination and tireless endurance of the spectral mount resonates and becomes shared to inhuman levels between the omen rider and itself. The omen rider’s spectral steed can take the run action without limit, and does not need to make Constitution checks to keep running. In addition, when the omen rider and her steed move at a full run for at least ten minutes, both of them become immune to fatigue and exhaustion until they stop running, at which point, the mount is immediately dismissed.
This ability replaces elusive shadow.
At 8th level, the omen rider is able to drink deep of the ambrosia of a fallen foe and strengthen themselves or their steed. Whenever the omen rider reduces a creature she has Claimed to 0 or fewer hit points, she and her spectral steed gain a number of temporary hit points equal to twice that creature’s Hit Dice instead of recovering maneuvers. These temporary hit points last until the end of the encounter.
This ability replaces ill intentions.
This ability functions normally, even when mounted.
Path of War – Expanded, © 2016, Dreamscarred Press.