Bounty Hunter

The bounty hunter is a specialized tracker and hunter who hunts down criminals. Many are essentially mercenaries, while others, often called bailiffs or constables, are officers of the local government. Unlike a simple guardsman, the bounty hunter is a relentless pursuer, whether his quarry takes cover in the wilderness or hides among friends and sympathizers. Some bounty hunters are deeply concerned with justice, but most view their work as a practical matter. They leave justice to be judged by their employers. Bounty hunters sometimes dabble in hunting monsters, while the less scrupulous are little more than assassins operating under the thin pretenses of their noble employers. Few bounty hunters will willingly take on a spell-caster, but if the price is right, the most daring bounty hunters sometimes attempt it.

Role: The bounty hunter is a master of ambush and maneuvers, much like a rogue, but can attack a cornered foe with the same ferocity as a fighter or ranger. Bounty hunters excel at taking out individual targets. Bounty hunters rely more on grit, a strong arm, and good equipment than on magic, although they commonly work for or alongside clerics and arcane casters against powerful targets. Bounty hunters are capable trackers.

Alignment: Any.

Hit Die: d10.

Class Skills

The bounty hunter’s class skills are Appraise (Int), Bluff (Cha), Climb (Str), Craft (Int), Disable Device (Dex), Disguise (Cha), Handle Animal (Cha), Heal (Wis), Intimidate (Cha), Knowledge (geography) (Int), Knowledge (local) (Int), Linguistics (Int), Perception (Wis), Profession (Wis), Ride (Dex), Sense Motive (Wis), Sleight of Hand (Dex), Stealth (Dex), Survival (Wis), and Swim (Str).

Skill Ranks per Level: 6 + Int modifier.

Table: Bounty Hunter

Level Base Attack Bonus Fort Save Ref Save Will Save Special
1st +1 +2 +2 +0 Track, sneak attack +1d6
2nd +2 +3 +3 +0 Uncanny dodge, worth more alive
3rd +3 +3 +3 +1 Sneak attack +2d6, endurance
4th +4 +4 +4 +1 Bonus feat
5th +5 +4 +4 +1 Sneak attack +3d6, people watcher
6th +6/+1 +5 +5 +2 Surprise attack
7th +7/+2 +5 +5 +2 Sneak attack +4d6
8th +8/+3 +6 +6 +2 Bonus feat, swift tracker
9th +9/+4 +6 +6 +3 Sneak attack +5d6
10th +10/+5 +7 +7 +3 Dangerous game
11th +11/+6/+1 +7 +7 +3 Sneak attack +6d6
12th +12/+7/+2 +8 +8 +4 Bonus feat
13th +13/+8/+3 +8 +8 +4 Sneak attack +7d6
14th +14/+9/+4 +9 +9 +4 Crippling strike
15th +15/+10/+5 +9 +9 +5 Sneak attack +8d6
16th +16/+11/+6/+1 +10 +10 +5 Bonus feat
17th +17/+12/+7/+2 +10 +10 +5 Sneak attack +9d6
18th +18/+13/+8/+3 +11 +11 +6 Slippery mind
19th +19/+14/+9/+4 +11 +11 +6 Sneak attack +10d6, relentless pursuit
20th +20/+15/+10/+5 +12 +12 +6 Bonus feat, locate creature, no rest

Class Features

All of the following are class features of the bounty hunter class.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency

Bounty hunters are proficient with all simple weapons plus the bolas, hand crossbow, long sword, net, rapier, sap, shortbow, and short sword. They are proficient with light armor, but not with shields.

Track (Ex)

A bounty hunter adds half his level (minimum 1) to Survival skill checks made to follow or identify tracks.

Sneak Attack (Ex)

If a bounty hunter can catch an opponent when she is unable to defend herself effectively from his attack, he can strike a vital spot for extra damage.

The bounty hunter’s attack deals extra damage anytime his target would be denied a Dexterity bonus to AC (whether the target actually has a Dexterity bonus or not), or when the bounty hunter flanks his target. This extra damage is 1d6 at 1st level, and increases by 1d6 every two bounty hunter levels thereafter. Should the bounty hunter score a critical hit with a sneak attack, this extra damage is not multiplied. Ranged attacks can count as sneak attacks only if the target is within 30 feet.

With a weapon that deals nonlethal damage (like a sap, whip, or an unarmed strike), a bounty hunter can make a sneak attack that deals nonlethal damage instead of lethal damage. He cannot use a weapon that deals lethal damage to deal nonlethal damage in a sneak attack, not even with the usual –4 penalty.

The bounty hunter must be able to see the target well enough to pick out a vital spot and must be able to reach such a spot. A bounty hunter cannot sneak attack while striking a creature with concealment. This is the same as the rogue ability.

Worth More Alive (Ex)

At 2nd level, a bounty hunter learns how to bring them in alive. If he so chooses, his sneak attack damage counts as nonlethal damage, even if delivered with a lethal weapon.

Uncanny Dodge (Ex)

Starting at 2nd level, a bounty hunter can 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. A bounty hunter with this ability can still lose his Dexterity bonus to AC if an opponent successfully uses the feint action against him.


At 3rd level, a bounty hunter gains Endurance as a bonus feat.

Bonus Feat

At 4th level, and every four levels thereafter, the bounty hunter may choose a bonus feat from the following list: Alertness, Animal Affinity, Blind-Fight, Catch Off-Guard, Combat Reflexes, Exotic Weapon Proficiency, Fleet, Improved Disarm, Improved Trip, Disruptive, Spellbreaker, Improved Initiative, Point-Blank Shot, Precise Shot, Quick Draw, Rapid Reload, Self-Sufficient, Stand Still. The bounty hunter need not meet the usual prerequisites.

People Watcher (Ex)

At 5th level, the bounty hunters gains a +2 bonus on Knowledge (local) and Sense Motive checks.

Surprise Attack (Ex)

A bounty hunter of at least 6th level gains the ability to strike with total surprise. During the surprise round, opponents are always considered flat-footed to a bounty hunter with this ability, even if they have already acted.

Swift Tracker

Beginning at 8th level, a bounty hunter can move at his 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 his normal speed while tracking.

Dangerous Game (Ex)

At 10th level, a bounty hunter can, as a standard action, denote one target within his line of sight as his collar. Whenever he is following the tracks of his collar, a bounty hunter can take 10 on his Survival skill checks while moving at normal speed, without penalty. In addition, he receives a +2 insight bonus on attack rolls made against his collar. Additionally, he receives a +2 bonus to AC and saves against attacks from the collar. The bounty hunter can have no more than one collar a time, and the collar’s creature type must be humanoid, monstrous humanoid, outsider, or undead. He can dismiss this effect at any time as a free action, but he cannot select a new collar for 24 hours. If the bounty hunter sees proof his collar is dead or unconscious, he can select a new collar after waiting 1 hour.

Crippling Strike (Ex)

At 14th level, a bounty hunter can sneak attack opponents with such precision that his blows weaken and hamper them. An opponent
damaged by one of his sneak attacks also takes 2 points of Strength damage. This is as the rogue advanced talent.

Slippery Mind (Ex)

If a bounty hunter of at least 18th level is affected by an enchantment spell or effect and fails his saving throw, he can attempt it again 1 round later at the same DC. He gets only this one extra chance to succeed on his saving throw.

Relentless Pursuit (Ex)

At 19th level, the bounty hunter’s ability to take down his collar improves. He can now select a collar as a free action, and can now take 20 while using Survival to track his quarry, while moving at normal speed without penalty. His insight bonus to attack his collar increases to +4. If his collar is killed, knocked unconscious, or dismissed, he can select a new one after ten minutes have passed.

Locate Creature (Sp)

At 20th level, a bounty hunter’s ability to find a creature becomes uncanny. Once per day, he can use locate creature as a spell-like ability.

No Rest (Ex)

A 20th level bounty hunter is ceaseless in his pursuit. As long as he has a designated collar, he is immune to fear, fatigue, exhaustion, and unconsciousness up to a number of rounds equal to his his level. He also gains the benefit of the Diehard feat while using this ability. These rounds need not be consecutive.

Section 15: Copyright Notice

Adventuring Classes: A Fistful of Denarii

Adventuring Classes: A Fistful of Denarii. Copyright 2009, Robert J. Grady. All rights reserved.
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