The world is a large place, where even the smallest of actions can have untold consequences. A hundred stones can build a fortress, a single loose stone can send it crashing down. A thousand blades can protect a king, a single blade can topple a nation. When subtlety of thought and action is necessary, a saboteur answers the call. Masters of deception and infiltration, saboteurs have all of the tools necessary to gain entrance to the most well-defended bastions and complete their mission. With specialized tricks to suit their needs and a variety of magical traps at their disposal, a well-prepared saboteur can accomplish any goal with none the wiser.

Role: Saboteurs are masters of trickery and sabotage, bypassing sentries and wards with ease while placing their own magical devices to trap unsuspecting foes. A saboteur’s variety of skills and abilities lets them improvise when needed, but a saboteur that properly prepares can be a truly dangerous combatant.

Alignment: Any.

Hit Die: d8.

Starting Age: Self-taught

Starting Wealth: 4d6 × 10 gp (average 140 gp.) In addition, each character begins play with an outfit worth 10 gp or less.

Class Skills

The saboteur’s class skills are Acrobatics (Dex), Appraise (Int), Bluff (Cha), Climb (Str), Craft (Int), Diplomacy (Cha), Disable Device (Dex), Disguise (Cha), Escape Artist (Dex), Intimidate (Cha), Knowledge (arcana) (Int), Knowledge (engineering) (Int), Knowledge (local) (Int), Linguistics (Int), Perception (Wis), Profession (Wis), Sense Motive (Wis), Sleight of Hand (Dex), Spellcraft (Int), Stealth (Dex), and Use Magic Device (Cha).

Skill Ranks per Level: 6 + Int modifier.

Table: Saboteur
Level BAB Fort Save Ref Save Will Save Special Traps Per Day
1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th
1st +0 +0 +2 +2 Marked Target, Trapfinding
2nd +1 +0 +3 +3 Evasion, Saboteur Trick
3rd +2 +1 +3 +3 Hidden Spotter
4th +3 +1 +4 +4 Saboteur Trick 3 1
5th +3 +1 +4 +4 Swift Sabotage
4 2
6th +4 +2 +5 +5 Saboteur Trick 4 3
7th +5 +2 +5 +5 Combined Arms
4 3 1
8th +6/+1 +2 +6 +6 Saboteur Trick 4 4 2
9th +6/+1 +3 +6 +6 Improved Mark
5 4 3
10th +7/+2 +3 +7 +7 Saboteur Trick 5 4 3 1
11th +8/+3 +3 +7 +7 Ranged Setup
5 4 4 2
12th +9/+4 +4 +8 +8 Saboteur Trick 5 5 4 3
13th +9/+4 +4 +8 +8 Improved Evasion
5 5 4 3 1
14th +10/+5 +4 +9 +9 Saboteur Trick 5 5 4 4 2
15th +11/+6/+1 +5 +9 +9 Lasting Traps
5 5 5 4 3
16th +12/+7/+2 +5 +10 +10 Saboteur Trick 5 5 5 4 3 1
17th +12/+7/+2 +5 +10 +10 Greater Mark
5 5 5 4 4 2
18th +13/+8/+3 +6 +11 +11 Saboteur Trick 5 5 5 5 4 3
19th +14/+9/+4 +6 +11 +11 Instant Sabotage
5 5 5 5 5 4
20th +15/+10/+5 +6 +12 +12 Master’s Trick, Saboteur Trick 5 5 5 5 5 5

Class Features

All of the following are class features of the saboteur.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency

Saboteurs are proficient with simple weapons, plus the hand crossbow, net, rapier, sap, shortbow, short sword, and with all firearms. They are proficient in light armors, but not with shields.


One of a saboteur’s most versatile tools are her traps. Unlike most trapsmiths, a saboteur can create complex, magically-enhanced traps with minimal materials, imparting her own arcane power into the trap to make a wide variety of effects. In many ways, saboteur traps behave like spells in trap form, and as such their effects can be dispelled by effects like dispel magic using the saboteur’s level as the caster level.

A saboteur can create only a certain number of traps of each level per day. Her base daily allotment of traps is given on Table: Saboteur. In addition, she receives bonus traps per day if she has a high Intelligence score, in the same way a wizard receives bonus spells per day. When a saboteur creates a trap, she assembles it with carefully-constructed gears, wires, and parts, imparting it with magical power to create wondrous effects. Each saboteur creates her traps differently; a trap made by one saboteur cannot be set or detonated remotely by another person, even another saboteur, though they can be disarmed via Disable Device like a normal trap. A trap, once created, remains usable for 1 day before the parts need to be repaired, so a saboteur must re-prepare her traps every day. Creating a trap takes 1 minute of work—most saboteurs prepare many traps at the start of the day or just before going on an adventure, but it’s not uncommon for a saboteur to keep some (or even all) of her daily trap slots open so that she can prepare traps in the field as needed.

Although the saboteur doesn’t actually cast spells, she does have an assembly list that determines what traps she can create. A saboteur can utilize spell-trigger items if the spell appears on her assembly list, but not spell- completion items (unless she uses Use Magic Device to do so). A trap is “cast” by setting it, as if placing a mechanical trap—setting a trap is a standard action that provokes attacks of opportunity, and must be placed in a square adjacent to the saboteur. A trap fills a single 5-foot square and cannot be placed in the same area as another saboteur trap or a magical trap such as a glyph of warding, and once placed cannot be moved. All saboteur traps are Type: Magical, Trigger: Location, and Reset: None. Once a trap is placed, it remains set for 10 minutes per caster level, after which it falls apart harmlessly. A saboteur can have a number of traps set equal to her Intelligence modifier; if she tries to set another trap when at this maximum, the oldest trap set deactivates harmlessly.

When the trap is triggered, the spell comes into effect on the creature that triggered it. If the spell targets one or more creatures, the trap targets as many creatures within range of the spell as possible, starting with the creature that triggered the trap and continuing to the next nearest creature, using the trap’s location as the point of origin and the saboteur’s bonuses for attack rolls. If the spell affects an area, it comes into effect centered on the trap’s location or originating from the trap’s space (in the case of spells with a point of origin like burning hands), aimed to strike as many targets as possible with the trap’s effect. If a trap’s effect has a duration of “concentration”, it can only be concentrated on if the saboteur has line of sight to the trap’s effect; otherwise, it lasts as if “concentrated” on for 1 round per four saboteur levels obtained (minimum 0). Any extra abilities the trap has that can be used by concentration or require action on the saboteur’s part, such as moving a flaming sphere, cannot be used unless the saboteur can see the effect and is within its normal range.

If the saboteur can see the trap as it triggers, she can designate targets or aim the area of effect of the trap as desired within the limitations of the spell’s effects, though the effect still originates from the trap’s space. Once per round, a saboteur may trigger a saboteur trap she has set within 30 feet as a move action, triggering it as if a creature had stepped on it. She may disarm a saboteur trap within 5 feet of her that she has placed as a standard action with no Disable Device check needed.

The saboteur uses her level as the caster level to determine any effect based on caster level. Creating traps consumes raw materials, but the cost of these materials is insignificant—comparable to the valueless material components of most spells. If a spell normally has a costly material component, that component is expended during the placing of that particular trap. Traps cannot be made from spells that have focus requirements (saboteur traps that duplicate divine spells never have a divine focus requirement). A saboteur can prepare a trap of any assembly she knows. To learn or use a trap, a saboteur must have an Intelligence score equal to at least 10 + the trap’s level. The Difficulty Class for a saving throw against a saboteur’s trap is 10 + the trap level + the saboteur’s Intelligence modifier. The Difficulty Class of Perception checks to locate a saboteur trap or Disable Device checks to disable a saboteur trap is equal to the trap’s save DC + 10. A saboteur may know any number of assemblies. She stores her assemblies in a special tome called an assembly book. She must refer to this book whenever she prepares a trap but not when she sets it. A saboteur begins play with two 1st level assemblies of her choice, plus a number of additional assemblies equal to her Intelligence modifier. At each new saboteur level, she gains one new assembly of any level that she can create. A saboteur can also add assemblies to her book just like a wizard adds spells to his spellbook, using the same costs and time requirements. A saboteur can study a wizard’s spellbook to learn any assemblies that is equivalent to a spell the spellbook contains. A wizard, however, cannot learn spells from an assembly book. A saboteur does not need to decipher arcane writings before copying them.

Marked Target (Ex)

Class Specific Feats

The following class specific feats are available to a character who meets the prerequisites.

Saboteurs must learn to adapt as needed based on the foes and obstacles they face. At 1st level, a saboteur learns how to mark a creature she can see as a move action. When she does, she chooses one of the following marks to apply to her target:

Assassin’s Mark: The saboteur gains a +1 bonus on attack and damage rolls against the marked target. This bonus increases by +1 at 5th level and every four levels thereafter.

Charlatan’s Mark: The saboteur gains a +1 bonus on Bluff, Diplomacy, Sleight of Hand, and Stealth checks against the target and on Bluff and Disguise checks to pass herself as the marked target. This bonus increases by +1 for every three levels past 1st.

Duelist’s Mark: The saboteur gains a +1 bonus to AC against attacks made by the marked target. This bonus increases by +1 at 5th level and every four levels thereafter.

Informant’s Mark: The saboteur gains a +1 bonus on Knowledge, Sense Motive, and Perception checks made against or concerning the marked target. This bonus increases by +1 for every two levels past first.

Once she has chosen which type of mark to apply to her target, she cannot change it. The mark lasts until the target dies, the saboteur dismisses the mark (a swift action), or for 24 hours, whichever comes first. She can choose to mark a dead creature (or leave her mark on a creature that dies, rather than having it automatically end); usually this is done to disguise herself as the deceased target with charlatan’s mark or to learn about the target with informant’s mark. Once a target has been marked, it cannot be marked again for 24 hours. The saboteur can only maintain one marked target at a time.

Trapfinding (Ex)

A saboteur adds 1/2 her level to Perception skill checks made to locate traps and to Disable Device skill checks (minimum +1). A saboteur can use Disable Device to disarm magic traps.

Evasion (Ex)

At 2nd level and higher, a saboteur can avoid even magical and unusual attacks with great agility. If she makes a successful Reflex saving throw against an attack that normally deals half damage on a successful save, she instead takes no damage. Evasion can be used only if the saboteur is wearing light armor or no armor. A helpless saboteur does not gain the benefit of evasion.

Saboteur Trick

Rather than learning a broad spectrum of techniques as a fighter, or a plethora of magical abilities as a wizard, a saboteur instead learns a few specialized tricks to better accomplish her goals. Starting at 2nd level, a saboteur gains one saboteur trick. She gains an additional saboteur trick for every two levels of saboteur attained after 2nd level. A saboteur cannot select an individual trick more than once. If a trick calls for a saving throw, the DC of the save is equal to 10 + 1/2 the saboteur’s level + her Intelligence modifier.

Hidden Spotter (Ex)

At 3rd level, a saboteur becomes adept at spotting hidden alcoves and traps, even passively. Whenever she passes within 10 feet of a trap, hidden passage, or secret door, she can attempt an immediate Perception check to notice the trap or passage. This check should be made in secret by the GM.

Swift Sabotage (Ex)

Starting at 5th level, a saboteur becomes adept at quickly disabling traps and other devices. It takes the saboteur half the normal time to perform a Disable Device check (minimum 1 round). If she attempts to use Disable Device to open a lock that would take a full-round action to open, she instead can do so as a standard action. She can also trigger a trap she has placed within 30 feet of her as a swift action, whether that trap is a saboteur trap or a mechanical trap she has placed.

Combined Arms (Ex)

Beginning at 7th level, a saboteur can combine the mechanical parts and magical energy of her weaker traps to create more powerful traps. When preparing her traps, she can give up a number of trap slots whose total trap levels is greater than or equal to the value shown in Table: Combined Arms to create a trap of the level shown. For example, if she wants to create an ice storm trap (a 4th level trap), she would have to give up a number of trap slots whose total levels is at least five or more. This can be any combination of trap slots, such as a 3rd level trap slot and a 2nd level trap slot, five 1st level trap slots, or some other combination. She cannot give up a trap slot whose level is equal to or higher than the trap being created. She can only use combined arms to create a trap she is capable of making.

Table: Combined Arms

Trap Level
Total Trap Levels Needed to Create

Improved Mark (Ex)

At 9th level, a saboteur’s ability to mark a target improves. She can now maintain two marked targets at once, and marking a target can be done as a swift action. She may now change which type of marks are applied to her marked targets as a swift action, but only once per marked target in a 24 hour period. She can change all of her marks with the same swift action.

Ranged Setup (Ex)

At 11th level, a saboteur learns how to set her traps from a distance. As part of the standard action to place a saboteur trap, she can throw the trap with a free hand to setup the trap in a single unoccupied square within 20 feet. Alternatively, she can affix the trap to an arrow, crossbow bolt, or thrown weapon, allowing her to set the trap from further away or use it as a direct attack. Drawing the trap, attaching the trap to the projectile and firing it in this manner is a full- round action. The trapped projectile is fired or thrown in the normal manner. If fired at a square, the trap is treated as if the saboteur had set the trap in that square. If fired at a creature, the target takes damage from the ranged weapon and is treated as if it had triggered the trap (saving throw applies). A trap that is set with this ability (either thrown or affixed to a ranged weapon) has its saving throw DC lowered by 2. A trap that is affixed to a ranged weapon and misses its target breaks apart harmlessly.

Improved Evasion (Ex)

At 13th level, a saboteur’s evasion improves. This ability works like evasion, except that while the saboteur still takes no damage on a successful Reflex saving throw against attacks, she henceforth takes only half damage on a failed save. A helpless saboteur does not gain the benefit of improved evasion.

Lasting Traps (Ex)

Starting at 15th level, a saboteur’s traps last for 1 hour per saboteur level before breaking apart, instead of 10 minutes per level.

Greater Mark (Ex)

At 17th level, a saboteur’s mark becomes especially potent. She can now maintain three marked targets at once, and can mark all of her targets simultaneously with a single swift action. Instead of maintaining multiple marked targets, she can instead mark a single target with two different marks. As long as she has a single target with two marks applied to it, she cannot maintain any other marked targets.

Instant Sabotage (Ex)

At 19th level, the saboteur can complete any Disable Device check that would take 1 round or longer in a single standard action. When using Disable Device to open a lock that would take a full-round action to open, she can instead do so as a swift action. She can also trigger a trap she has placed within 30 feet of her as a free action, whether that trap is a saboteur trap or a mechanical trap she has placed. She can only trigger one trap each round in this manner.

Master’s Trick

At 20th level, the saboteur learns her signature, a special trick that sets her skill far apart from a less experienced saboteur. She gains one of the following master’s tricks of her choice. The master’s trick is an exceptionally powerful ability, the sort of skill spoken of in tales of legendary thieves and agents.

Favored Class Bonuses

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 saboteur as their Favored Class, and unless otherwise stated, the bonus applies each time you select the listed Favored Class reward.

Table: Alternate Favored Class Bonuses
Race Bonus Source
Core Races
Dwarves Add a +1/2 bonus on Perception checks to notice traps, hidden passages, and secret doors.
Elves The saboteur gains 1/6 of a new saboteur trick. PI
Gnomes Add a +1 bonus on Disable Device and Use Magic Device checks related to glyphs, symbols, scrolls, and other magical writings.
Half-Elves Gain a +1/2 bonus on Bluff checks to feint and Diplomacy checks to gain information.
Half-orcs Gain a +1/3 bonus on critical hit confirmation rolls when attacking a marked target (max +5). This bonus does not stack with the Critical Focus feat.
Halflings Gain a +1/4 dodge bonus to AC against the target of your Duelist’s Mark (max +5).
Humans Add one trap assembly from the saboteur’s list to the character’s assembly book. This assembly must be at least one level below the highest-level assembly the saboteur can create. PI
Other Races
Aasimar Add +1/2 to the saboteur’s level for the purpose of determining the effects of one saboteur trick. PI
Drow Add a +1/2 bonus on Intimidate checks to demoralize and on Bluff checks to pass secret messages.
Kobold Choose acid, cold, electricity, or fire. Add +1/2 point of the chosen energy damage to saboteur traps that deal the chosen energy damage set by the saboteur.
Tiefling Add +1/4 to weapon damage rolls dealt to marked targets with the outsider type.

Archetypes & Alternate Class Features

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.

Saboteurs are always looking for new ways to complete their goals, but their normal abilities may not always be suitable. Some look to create specialized traps to conjure allies or demolish buildings, while others forgo their typical training and instead focus on delving into ancient ruins and civilizations, using their expertise to bypass traps and curses unharmed.

Table: Archetypes / Alternate Class Features
Archetype / Alternate Class Feature Class Features Changed or Replaced
Class Skills Weapon & Armor Saboteur Traps
Marked Target Trapfinding Evasion Saboteur Tricks Hidden Spotter Swift Sabotage Combined Arms Improved Mark Ranged Setup Improved Evasion Lasting Traps Greater Mark Instant Sabotage Master’s Trick
2 4 6 8 10 12 14 16 18 20
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Path of Iron, © 2015, Ascension Games, LLC; Author Christopher Moore

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