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Rune Master

Although dwarven strongholds boast many “ordinary” clerics and wizards, the dwarves consider the highest form of magic to be the power of runes. Rune masters are highly respected among the dwarves, but much is demanded of them as well. Some rune masters guard their secrets jealously, and rarely if ever share them with outsiders.

Rune masters apply their legendary affinity for crafting even to mysterious arcane energies. These intensely focused spellcasters learn how to solidify the energy of a spell into a tangible object, saving it for later release or, in cases of dire necessity, shatter them to produce devastating explosions.

Role: Members of this prestige class share many unusual abilities, but the best known is that of runecasting — the ability to draw runes in the air and discharge them at will. Runecasting also allows one to use runes as a protective ward. Unfortunately, the runes are easy to see, glowing as brightly as a torch, and dwarf rune masters with prepared spells often find themselves the target of numerous magical and missile attacks while in combat.

Alignment: Rune masters can be of any alignment, although the majority of them are lawful.

Hit Die: d8


To qualify to become a rune master, a character must fulfill all the following criteria.

Race: A rune master must be a dwarf. At the GM’s discretion, a character of another race who speaks Dwarvish might also be a rune master.

Feats: Inscribe Rune (see Chapter 4)

Skills: Craft (any) 4 ranks, Spellcraft 4 ranks

Spells: Able to cast 2nd level spells

Class Skills

The rune master’s class skills (and the key ability for each) are Appraise (Int), Craft (Int), Knowledge (all) (Int), Linguistics (Int), Profession (Wis), and Spellcraft (Int).

Skill Ranks at Each Level: 2 + Intelligence modifier

Table: Runemaster
Level Base Attack Bonus Fort Save Ref Save Will Save Special Spells Per Day
1 +0 +0 +0 +1 Runecasting +1 level of existing class
2 +1 +1 +1 +1 +1 level of existing class
3 +1 +1 +1 +2 Runic shield +1 level of existing class
4 +2 +2 +2 +2 +1 level of existing class
5 +2 +2 +2 +3 Shatter runes +1 level of existing class

Class Features

All of the following are class features of the rune master prestige class.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency

Rune masters gain no proficiency with any weapon or armor.

Spells per Day

When a new rune master level is gained, the character gains new spells per day as if he had also gained a level in a spellcasting class he belonged to before adding the prestige class. He does not, however, gain other benefits a character of that class would have gained, except for additional spells per day, spells known (if he is a spontaneous spellcaster), and an increased effective level of spellcasting. If a character had more than one spellcasting class before becoming a rune master, he must decide to which class he adds the new level for purposes of determining spells per day.

Runecasting (Su)

At 1st level, the rune master gains the ability to prepare additional spells per day, storing them as faintly glowing runes that hover in the air above his head until discharged. In this way, while preparing his spells each day, the rune master may “runestore” one extra spell of each level he can cast.

Runestored spells give off dim light in a 5-foot radius around the rune master, and a runestored spell may be identified by anyone who can see it, using a Spellcraft check as if attempting to identify the spell as it is being cast. Runestored spells may also be targeted normally with dispel magic spells and similar effects.

A runestored spell can be cast as a swift action.

Runic Shield (Su)

Starting at 3rd level, the rune master may discharge one of his runestored spells as an immediate action, giving himself a +2 deflection bonus to AC and a +2 bonus on Reflex saving throws until the start of his next turn. At 5th level, these bonuses both increase by +2.

Shatter Runes (Su)

At 5th level, the rune master may cause any two of his runestored spells to collide as a standard action, releasing a blast of crackling arcane energy in a 30-foot burst centered on the rune master. This blast deals 1d6 point of force damage per spell level of the combined total of both spells. For example, a rune master who shatters two runestored spells, one 2nd level and one 5th level, deals 2d6 + 5d6 = 7d6 damage. A Reflex saving throw (DC 10 + 1/2 the rune master’s level + his Intelligence modifier) reduces this damage by half.

The rune master may bend the magical energies to avoid one or more allies within range, to a maximum number of creatures equal to his Intelligence modifier; these creatures take no damage from the blast.

Section 15: Copyright Notice

Scarred Lands Player’s Guide © 2016, Onyx Path and Nocturnal Publishing, LLC; Authors Bill Ashbless, Jason Bolte, Tanya Cohan-Diaz, Chris Cowger, Steffie de Vaan, Adam Eichelberger, Matt Franklin, Nathan Knaack, Eddy Webb