S-Class Barbarian

S-class barbarians build on their natural roots, becoming expert trackers who channel the world’s power through the rites of fury and instinct. One might wear equipment that gives her a more feral appearance, while another could forgo armor entirely and emphasize her own physical prowess.

Role: An s-class barbarian remains a powerful, capable warrior. How she expresses her raw strength in battle depends on her choice of warrior’s instinct.

Note: The s-class barbarian is an alternate, superior version of the barbarian class. We present them here using the unchained rage mechanic, but they can also use the standard barbarian rage mechanic instead. If you choose to do so, the decision cannot be changed. They can also select barbarian archetypes, adjusting the levels of fast movement, uncanny dodge, and improved uncanny dodge accordingly.

Alignment: Any nonlawful.

Hit Die: d12.

Starting Wealth: 3d6 × 10 gp (average 105 gp.)

Class Skills

The s-class barbarian’s class skills are Acrobatics (Dex), Climb (Str), Craft (Int), Handle Animal (Cha), Intimidate (Cha), Knowledge (nature) (Int), Perception (Wis), Ride (Dex), Survival (Wis), and Swim (Str).

Skill Ranks per Level: 4 + Int modifier.

Table: S-Class Barbarian
Level Base Attack Bonus Fort Save Ref Save Will Save Special
1st +1 +2 +0 +0 Rage, warrior’s instinct (lesser)
2nd +2 +3 +0 +0 Defensive instinct, fast movement, rage power
3rd +3 +3 +1 +1 Danger sense +1, swift foot
4th +4 +4 +1 +1 Rage power, uncanny dodge
5th +5 +4 +1 +1 Track, warrior’s instinct
6th +6/+1 +5 +2 +2 Danger sense +2, rage power
7th +7/+2 +5 +2 +2 Damage Reduction 1/—, heightened senses, improved uncanny dodge
8th +8/+3 +6 +2 +2 Rage power
9th +9/+4 +6 +3 +3 Danger sense +3, warrior’s instinct (greater)
10th +10/+5 +7 +3 +3 Damage Reduction 2/—, rage power
11th +11/+6/+1 +7 +3 +3 Rage (greater), raging athlete (1)
12th +12/+7/+2 +8 +4 +4 Danger sense +4, rage power
13th +13/+8/+3 +8 +4 +4 Damage Reduction 3/—, persistent fury, swift tracker
14th +14/+9/+4 +9 +4 +4 Indomitable will, rage power
15th +15/+10/+5 +9 +5 +5 Danger sense +5, raging athlete (2)
16th +16/+11/+6/+1 +10 +5 +5 Damage Reduction 4/—, rage power
17th +17/+12/+7/+2 +10 +5 +5 Persistent fury, tireless rage
18th +18/+13/+8/+3 +11 +6 +6 Danger sense +6, rage power
19th +19/+14/+9/+4 +11 +6 +6 Damage Reduction 5/—, persistent fury, raging athlete (3)
20th +20/+15/+10/+5 +12 +6 +6 Rage (mighty), rage power

Class Features

All of the following are class features of the s-class barbarian.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency

An s-class barbarian is proficient with all simple and martial weapons, light armor, medium armor, and shields (except tower shields).

Rage (Ex)

An s-class barbarian can call upon inner reserves of strength and ferocity, granting her additional combat prowess. At 1st level, an s-class barbarian can rage for a number of rounds per day equal to 4 + her Constitution modifier.

For each level after 1st she possesses, the barbarian can rage for 2 additional rounds per day. Temporary increases to Constitution, such as that gained from bear’s endurance, do not increase the total number of rounds that an s-class barbarian can rage per day. An s-class barbarian can enter a rage as a free action. The total number of rounds of rage per day is renewed after resting for 8 hours, although these hours need not be consecutive.

While in a rage, an s-class barbarian gains a +2 bonus on melee attack rolls, melee damage rolls, thrown weapon damage rolls, and Will saving throws. In addition, she takes a –2 penalty to Armor Class. She also gains 2 temporary hit points per Hit Die. These temporary hit points are lost first when a character takes damage, disappear when the rage ends, and are not replenished if the barbarian enters a rage again within 1 minute of her previous rage. The bonus and temporary hit points increase to 3 at 11th level (greater rage), and 4 at 20th level (mighty rage).

While in a rage, an s-class barbarian cannot use any Charisma-, Dexterity-, or Intelligence-based skill (except Acrobatics, Fly, Intimidate, and Ride) or any ability that requires patience or concentration (such as spellcasting).

An s-class barbarian can end her rage as a free action, and is fatigued for 1 minute after a rage ends. An s-class barbarian can’t enter a new rage while fatigued or exhausted, but can otherwise enter a rage multiple times per day. If an s-class barbarian falls unconscious, her rage immediately ends.

Warrior’s Instinct (Ex)

At 1st level, an s-class barbarian chooses either one 1st through 4th-level lesser totem rage power or one of the instinct combinations listed at the end of this section. She gains that power. She need not meet the prerequisites of any rage powers gained with warrior’s instinct.

At 5th level, and again at 9th level, the barbarian gains the next rage power she does not already have in line with the totem or instinct she chose at 1st level.

A full list of warrior’s instincts can be found here.

Defensive Instinct (Ex)

At 2nd level, when unarmored, not using a shield, unencumbered, and conscious, the barbarian adds her Wisdom bonus (if any) to her AC and CMD. If she is wearing armor or using a shield, she instead adds half her Wisdom bonus to her AC (minimum 0). In addition, the barbarian gains a +1 bonus to her AC and CMD at 4th level. This bonus increases by 1 for every 4 barbarian levels thereafter (up to a maximum of +5 at 20th level).

These bonuses to AC apply even against touch attacks and when the barbarian is flat-footed. She loses these bonuses when she is immobilized or helpless. These bonuses do not stack with the monk AC bonus class feature.

Fast Movement (Ex)

At 2nd level, an s-class barbarian’s base speed is faster than the norm for her race by 10 feet. This benefit applies only when she is wearing no armor, light armor, or medium armor, and not carrying a heavy load. Apply this bonus before modifying the barbarian’s speed because of any load carried or armor worn. This bonus stacks with any other bonuses to the barbarian’s base speed.

Rage Powers (Ex or Su)

As an s-class barbarian gains levels, she learns to use her rage in new ways. At 2nd level and every 2 levels thereafter, the barbarian gains a rage power. Until she gains persistent fury (see below), an s-class barbarian gains the benefits of rage powers only while raging. Some of these powers are always active during a rage, and others require the barbarian to take an action to use them. Unless otherwise noted, an s-class barbarian cannot select an individual power more than once.

Rage powers can be found here, and new rage powers introduced with the s-class barbarian can be found here.

Danger Sense (Ex)

At 3rd level, an s-class barbarian gains a +1 bonus on Reflex saves to avoid traps and a +1 dodge bonus to AC against attacks by traps. In addition, she gains a +1 bonus on Perception checks to avoid being surprised by a foe.

These bonuses increase by 1 every 3 levels thereafter (to a maximum of +6 at 18th level). This ability counts as trap sense for any feat or class prerequisite, and can be replaced by any archetype class feature that replaces trap sense. The bonuses gained from this ability stack with those gained from trap sense (if the barbarian has trap sense from another class).

Swift Foot (Ex)

At 3rd level, an s-class barbarian gains the swift foot rage power, which grants her a 5-foot enhancement bonus to her speed. This increase is always active while the barbarian is raging.

Uncanny Dodge (Ex)

At 4th level, an s-class barbarian gains the ability to react to danger before her senses would normally allow her to do so. She cannot be caught flat-footed, nor does she lose her Dexterity bonus to AC if immobilized. An s-class barbarian with this ability can still lose her Dexterity bonus to AC if an opponent successfully uses the feint action against her.

If an s-class barbarian already has uncanny dodge from a different class, she automatically gains improved uncanny dodge (see below) instead.

Track (Ex)

Beginning at 5th level, an s-class barbarian adds half her barbarian level to Survival skill checks made to follow tracks.

Damage Reduction (Ex)

At 7th level, an s-class barbarian gains damage reduction.

Each time the barbarian takes damage from a weapon or natural attack, subtract 1 from the damage taken. At 10th level and every 3 levels thereafter, this damage reduction rises by 1 point (up to 5 points at 19th level). Damage Reduction can reduce damage to 0, but not below 0.

Heightened Senses (Ex)

At 7th level, you gain the low-light vision rage power. If you have low-light vision already, you gain the night vision rage power instead. If you have darkvision already, you gain the primal scent rage power instead.

Improved Uncanny Dodge (Ex)

At 7th level, an s-class barbarian can no longer be flanked.

This defense denies enemies the ability to sneak attack the barbarian by flanking her, unless the attacker has at least 4 more levels in a class that provides sneak attack than the barbarian has barbarian levels.

If the barbarian also has uncanny dodge from another class, levels from the classes that grant uncanny dodge stack to determine the minimum level required to flank the barbarian.

Raging Athlete (Ex)

At 11th level, and again at 15th and 19th level, an s-class barbarian can select one of the following rage powers: Raging climber, raging leaper, or raging swimmer. If she already has one of those powers, she can select the associated bestial rage power (such as bestial climber) that comes after it instead.

Persistent Fury (Ex)

At 13th, 17th, and 19th level, an s-class barbarian can select one rage power she possesses that either does not have prerequisite rage powers, or for which she has selected all previous rage power prerequisites with this option. For example, she cannot select a greater rage totem power until she has selected both prior rage powers in that line. The same applies to her instincts.

Each of the rage powers the barbarian has selected with this ability either become constant (such as low-light vision) or can be used once per minute when not raging. If she rages after using an ability in this way, she can still use it again normally during the rage.

Swift Tracker (Ex)

Beginning at 13th level, an s-class barbarian can move at her normal speed while using Survival to follow tracks without taking the normal –5 penalty. He takes only a –10 penalty (instead of the normal –20) when moving at up to twice normal speed while tracking.

Indomitable Will (Ex)

At 14th level, an s-class barbarian gains a +4 bonus on Will saves to resist enchantment spells while raging. This bonus stacks with all other modifiers, including the morale bonus on Will saves she gains during her rage.

Tireless Rage (Ex)

At 17th level, an s-class barbarian is no longer fatigued at the end of her rage. If she enters a rage again within 1 minute of ending a rage, she doesn’t gain any temporary hit points from her rage.

Section 15: Copyright Notice

S-Class Characters: The Barbarian. Copyright 2021, Samurai Sheepdog. Author: Kevin Glusing

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