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Snake Clan Warchief

“Woe to he who treads upon a serpent, for he shall feel the touch of death.”

The snake clan warchief is a barbarian whose clan venerates snakes. The snake clan warchief is in tune with the great snake spirit and embodies a snake’s stealth, swift deadly attack, and fearsome reputation. They are often used as scouts and assassins, and lead war parties organized for ambush.

Hit Die: d12


To qualify to become a snake clan warchief, a character must fulfill all of the following criteria:

Class Skills

The class skills for this class (and the key ability for each skill) are Acrobatics (Dex), Climb (Str), Craft (Int), Handle Animal (Cha), Intimidate (Cha), Knowledge (nature) (Int), Perception (Wis), Ride (Dex), Stealth (Dex), Survival (Wis), and Swim (Str).

Skill Ranks at Each Level: 4 + Int modifier

Table: The Snake Clan Warchief
Class Level BAB Fort Save Ref Save Will Save Special
1st +1 +1 +1 +1 Wild Empathy (Snakes), Poison Resistance +2
2nd +2 +1 +1 +1 Woodland Stride
3rd +3 +2 +1 +1 Safe Poison Use, Poison Resistance +3
4th +4 +2 +2 +2 Snake Camouflage, Master Ambusher
5th +5 +3 +2 +2 Serpentine Rage, Poison Resistance +4
6th +6 +3 +2 +2 Rage Improvement, Scent 2/day
7th +7 +4 +3 +3 Damage Reduction 2/-
8th +8 +4 +3 +3 Rage Improvement, Indomitable Will
9th +9 +5 +3 +3 Damage Reduction 3/-
10th +10 +5 +4 +4 Greater Rage

Class Features

All of the following are class features of the snake clan warchief prestige class.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency

Snake clan warchiefs are proficient with all simple and martial weapons, light armor, medium armor, and shields.

Wild Empathy (Snakes) (Ex)

At 1st level, the snake clan warchief can improve the attitude of any snake. This ability functions just like a Diplomacy check to improve the attitude of a person. The snake clan warchief rolls 1d20 and adds his total character level and his Charisma bonus to determine the wild empathy check result. The typical snake has a starting attitude of unfriendly.

To use wild empathy, the snake clan warchief and the animal must be able to study each other, which means that they must be within 30 feet of one another under normal visibility conditions. Generally, influencing an animal in this way takes 1 minute, but, as with influencing people, it might take more or less time.

The snake clan warchief can also use this ability to influence a magical snake-like beast with an Intelligence score of 1 or 2, but he takes a –2 penalty on the check.

Poison Resistance (Ex)

By constantly exposing himself to increasing amounts of snake venom, the snake clan warchief increases his resistance to poison. At 1st level, the bonus is +2. At 3rd level, the bonus increases to +3, and at 5th level it increases to +4.

Woodland Stride

At 2nd level, the snake clan warchief has studied snake methods of movement and stealth through the wilderness long enough that he now gains the druid’s woodland stride ability. Safe Poison Use: At 3rd level, the snake clan warchief becomes an expert at working with poisons and no longer risks poisoning himself when applying them to weapons. Furthermore, the snake clan warchief learns the best places to strike his enemies to maximize poison exposure when using injected poisons. The save DC of all injected poisons he uses are increased by +2.

Snake Camouflage

At 4th level, the snake clan warchief learns how to ritually paint himself and his equipment with the intricate camouflage patterns of many different snakes, giving him a +4 bonus on Stealth checks when in the wilderness or caves. When camouflaged in this way, he is also considered to have partial concealment (opponents have a 20% miss chance) whenever he is in a natural outdoor or cave environment, is wearing no armor or light armor, and moves no more than half his base land speed during a round. The snake clan warchief must have access to colored paints, dyes, or oils, although he can make a DC 14 Knowledge (Nature) check to find plants and natural materials to create the camouflage paint. Applying the camouflage takes 10 minutes and lasts for 1 hour per level of the snake clan warchief. To successfully apply the camouflage, he must make a DC 10 Knowledge (Nature) check. If he fails, he does not get the bonus and must start all over again. If a camouflaged snake clan warchief moves into a significantly different type of natural terrain (such as from forest to desert or snow), he must apply new camouflage to match his new surroundings. The camouflage is ruined if exposed to water for more than three rounds. Spells that reveal hidden and invisible creatures also reveal the camouflaged snake clan warchief. Master Ambusher: At 4th level, the snake clan warchief’s stealth and snake-like instincts become so honed that his opponents find it hard to detect him during an ambush, and he becomes very hard to surprise, himself. A snake clan warchief gains a +2 bonus on attack rolls in surprise rounds. When using Stealth, the snake clan warchief’s opponents suffer a -4 penalty to all Perception checks required to notice him if he attempts to surprise them. He gains a +4 bonus to any Perception check required when determining his own awareness in a surprise round.

Serpentine Rage

At 5th level the snake clan warchief’s hissing rage freezes his opponents with fear. When raging, the snake clan warchief designates a single foe (no more than one size larger than himself) within 20 feet of him who must make a Will save (DC 12 + the snake clan warchief’s prestige class levels) or become nearly frozen with fear, unable to move more than 5ft. per round as long as the snake clan warchief continues to rage and the target can see and hear him. The victim may otherwise 80 act normally, though he is denied his Dexterity bonus. The victim may attempt to make a save each round in order to break out of his fear. A victim who successfully saves remains immune to the effect of the snake clan warchief’s rage for one day. Creatures immune to fear and those with no visual or auditory senses are immune to this effect.

Rage Improvement

At 6th and 8th level, the snake clan warchief’s rage ability improves. He can choose to use his barbarian rage four more additional rounds per day or he may instead choose a new rage power selected from the barbarian’s rage power list. Once the choice is made, it cannot be changed.

Scent (Ex)

At 6th level, twice per day as a free action, the snake clan warchief can call upon the spirits of snakes to lend him their natural scent ability. This ability lasts for 1d6 hours.

Damage Reduction

At levels 7 and 9, the snake clan warchief gains the extraordinary ability to shrug off some amount of injury from each blow or attack. This ability is identical to and stacks with a barbarian’s damage reduction.

Indomitable Will

At 8th level, the snake clan warchief gains the barbarian’s Indomitable Will ability.

Greater Rage

At 10th level, the snake clan warchief gains the greater rage ability identical to that of a barbarian’s.

Section 15: Copyright Notice

Grimoire Viperian: A Tome of Exotic Lore Copyright 2021 Magic Skull Games Author: Steven F. Johnson