Racial Paragon Class
In most campaigns, the ideas of class and race are separate concepts. But, with racial paragon classes, the line between the two becomes blurred.
Racial paragons are, as the name suggests, nearly ideal examples of the strengths and abilities of the character’s race. Unlike members of other classes, however, racial paragons are more than merely powerful individuals. They are strong in all the ways that their race is strong, while still vulnerable in the ways that their race is vulnerable. Beyond that, they possess powers and capabilities that supersede those of normal members of their race.
Racial paragons rarely undergo the rigorous training or study that members of other classes commonly undertake between levels. Their experience, wisdom, and heroic abilities simply manifest in the form of superior innate racial abilities. Despite this strong association with race, racial paragons need not have specific views or special dedication to their race’s beliefs or typical attitudes (although many do). Obviously, a character can only take levels in the racial paragon class associated with his race. Like the fighter, wizard, and other standard character classes, racial paragon classes have no prerequisites (other than being a member of the appropriate race). Levels in racial paragon classes are considered to be advancing in a favored class.
The hishoken is a racial paragon class for tengu characters.
The soul of the tengu longs to fly, knowing, instinctively, that the power to do so lies within them. Their study of sword-play is often geared toward awakening this power, allowing the tengu to reconnect with their elemental roots. The hishoken is a racial paragon class available to tengu which allows them to awaken their natural powers. The class focuses on lightning fast swordattacks, prodigious leaps, and ultimately limited flight. The class draws its power from the tengu’s natural affinity for the element of air.
Role: Hishoken are agile combatants, especially skilled with the sword. Their ability to leap and fly, even if only briefly, gives them great maneuverability. There are few physical obstacles they cannot simply bypass and they are more than capable of holding their own in a fight.
Hit Die: d10.
The hishoken’s class skills are Acrobatics (Dex), Climb (Str), Craft (Int), Diplomacy (Cha), Escape Artist (Dex), Fly (Dex), Handle Animal (Cha), Heal (Wis), Intimidate (Cha), Knowledge (nature), Knowledge (religion), Linguistics (Int), Perception (Wis), Perform (Cha), Profession (Wis), Sense Motive (Wis), Stealth (Dex), Survival (Wis).
Skill Ranks per Level: 4 + Int modifier.
|Level||Base Attack Bonus||Fort Save||Ref Save||Will Save||Special|
|1st||+1||+2||+2||+0||Master leaper, controlled blade|
|3rd||+3||+3||+3||+1||Lightning strike 1/day|
|4th||+4||+4||+4||+1||Fast movement +10 ft.|
|5th||+5||+4||+4||+1||Electric resistance, hishoken flight|
|8th||+8/+3||+6||+6||+2||Lightning strike 2/day|
|10th||+10/+5||+7||+7||+3||Improved uncanny dodge|
|11th||+11/+6/+1||+7||+7||+3||Improved controlled blade|
|13th||+13/+8/+3||+8||+8||+4||Lightning strike 3/day|
|17th||+17/+12/+7+/2||+10||+10||+5||Fast movement +10 ft.|
|18th||+18/+13/+8/+3||+11||+11||+6||Bonus feat, lightning strike 4/day|
|20th||+20/+15/+10/+5||+12||+12||+6||Electric resistance (immunity), flying blade|
All of the following are class features of the hishoken.
Weapon and Armor Proficiency
The hishoken is proficient with all simple and martial weapons. He is proficient with light and medium armors.
When making an Acrobatic skill check to jump or leap, the hishoken adds double his hishoken class level to the check.
Furthermore, the hishoken always counts as having a running start when making a jump check using Acrobatics.
At 2nd level, so long as he is wearing light armor or no armor, the hishoken gains the ability to react to danger before his senses would normally allow him to do so. He cannot be caught flat-footed, even if the attacker is invisible. He still loses his Dexterity bonus to AC if immobilized or if an opponent successfully uses feint against him. If the hishoken already has uncanny dodge from another class, he automatically gains improved uncanny dodge instead.
Beginning at 3rd level, the hishoken is able, as a swift action, to make a lightning fast attack with any weapon he is proficient with using his full attack bonus. This attack must be made against a target which is within range of the weapon and, if it is not helpless or pinned, the creature is allowed a Reflex saving throw where the DC is equal to 10 + 1/2 the hishoken’s class level + the hishoken’s Dexterity modifier. Characters with uncanny dodge gain a +4 to this saving throw. If the subject of the attack fails his saving throw, he is considered flat-footed against the attack. If the saving throw is successful, the attack is resolved as normal. A lightning strike does not preclude the hishoken from further actions during the round, including additional attacks. At 3rd level, the hishoken can make a single lightning strike each day. For every 5 levels beyond 3rd, the hishoken gains an additional lightning strike per day.
At 4th level, so long as he is wearing medium armor, light armor or no armor, and is not carrying a heavy load, the hishoken’s base speed increases by +10 ft. The hishoken’s speed increases an additional +10 ft. at 17th level. These bonuses stack with any other bonuses to the hishoken’s base speed.
Beginning at 5th level the hishoken gains resistance to electricity equal to his hishoken class level. At 20th level, the hishoken gains immunity to electrical damage.
At 5th level, the hishoken gains the ability to fly for brief periods of time.
Each day, the hishoken can fly for a number of rounds equal to his class level – 4. When flying, the hishoken has a flight speed equal to his normal speed and an average maneuverability.
The hishoken’s rounds of flight each day do not need to be used consecutively. A hishoken who uses all his rounds of flight while in the air is subject to falling as normal.
At 6th level and every 6 levels thereafter the hishoken gains a bonus feat. The feat must be taken from the following: Acrobatic, Agile Maneuvers, Combat Reflexes, Dodge, Quick Draw, Lightning Reflexes, Mobility, Skill Focus (Acrobatics), Skill Focus (Fly), Spring Attack, Weapon Focus. The hishoken must qualify, as normal, for the selected bonus feat.
At 7th level the hishoken gains the ability to avoid even magical and unusual attacks with great agility. Any time he makes a successful Reflex save which would normally result in half damage, the hishoken instead takes no damage.
At 9th level, the hishoken is considered, for all practical purposes, weightless. He can stand on thin branches without breaking them, does not trigger trap doors or terrain features dependent on weight, and gains a +10 bonus to Climb checks. Feathered stepcan only be used if the hishoken is wearing medium, light or no armor. A helpless hishoken cannot benefit from feathered step.
At 10th level and higher a hishoken can no longer be flanked.
This defense denies a rogue the ability to sneak attack the hishoken by flanking him, unless the attacker has at least four more rogue levels than the tengu has hishoken levels. If a character has uncanny dodge from another class, the levels from the classes that grant uncanny dodge stack to determine the minimum rogue level required to flank the character.
At 11th level, the hishoken’s control of his sword has improved so that when attacking with a sword, the hishoken can choose to modify his attack rolls with both his Strength and his Dexterity modifiers.
Beginning at 15th level, as a swift action, the hishoken gains the ability to take on the form of a medium air elemental, as with elemental body II. The hishoken can remain in this form for a number of rounds per day equal to 1/2 his hishoken class level. The rounds spent in the form of an air elemental do not need to be consecutive.
Beginning at 16th level, the hishoken no longer falls as normal and is considered to have feather fall, at will. This abilitycan only be used if the hishoken is wearing medium, light or no armor and a helpless hishoken cannot benefit from feathered fall.
At 19th level, the hishoken can, when charging, put on a burst of speed, moving up to three times his normal distance before attacking (instead of double) and gaining a +3 charge bonus instead of the normal +2 bonus. The hishoken suffers the normal penalties to his AC when making a charge.
At 20th level, the hishoken masters the tengu flying blade technique. When flying, the hishoken gains a +4 dodge bonus to AC, Reflex saves and CMD. Furthermore, when using a sword, if the hishoken scores a critical hit, he may immediately make an additional attack against the same target, using the same attack bonus as he used to achieve the critical.
Instead of receiving an additional skill rank or hit point whenever they gain a level in a Favored Class, some races have the option of choosing from a number of other bonuses, depending upon their Favored Classes. The following options are available to the listed race who have hishoken as their Favored Class, and unless otherwise stated, the bonus applies each time you select the listed Favored Class reward.
|3rd Party Publishers|
When a character selects a class, he must choose to use the standard class features found or those listed in one of the archetypes presented here. Each alternate class feature replaces a specific class feature from its parent class. For example, the elemental fist class feature of the monk of the four winds replaces the stunning fist class feature of the monk. When an archetype includes multiple class features, a character must take all of them—often blocking the character from ever gaining certain familiar class features, but replacing them with equally powerful options. All of the other class features found in the core class and not mentioned among the alternate class features remain unchanged and are acquired normally when the character reaches the appropriate level (unless noted otherwise). A character who takes an alternate class feature does not count as having the class feature that was replaced when meeting any requirements or prerequisites.
A character can take more than one archetype and garner additional alternate class features, but none of the alternate class features can replace or alter the same class feature from the core class as another alternate class feature. For example, a paladin could not be both a hospitaler and an undead scourge since they both modify the smite evil class feature and both replace the aura of justice class feature. A paladin could, however, be both an undead scourge and a warrior of the holy light, since none of their new class features replace the same core class feature.
Archetypes are a quick and easy way to specialize characters of a given class, adding fun and flavorful new abilities to already established adventurers. Characters may take more than one archetype if they meet the requirements.
|Archetype / Alternate Class Feature||Class Features Changed or Replaced|
|Class Skills||Skill Ranks per Level||Weapon & Armor Proficiency||Master Leaper||Controlled Blade||Uncanny Dodge||Lightning Strike||Fast Movement||Electric Resistance||Hishoken Flight||Bonus Feat||Evasion||Feathered Step||Improved Uncanny Dodge||Improved Controlled Blade||Improved Evasion||Elemental Body||Feathered Fall||Lightning Charge||Flying Blade|
|3rd Party Publishers|
|X=replaced, (X)=optional replacement, C=changed|
In the Company of Tengu copyright 2011, Steve D. Russell and Michael Tumey. All rights reserved; Author: Jonathan McAnulty