Favoring students with strong arms and disciplined souls, fighting schools pass on secrets of martial finesse to those with the talent and ability to be trained. Whether taking the form of monasteries hidden high in misty mountains or underground fighting pits secreted beneath city streets, fighting schools hone their students into living weapons. While many fighting schools focus on exotic martial arts, some students learn their skills from the brutality of the streets, the ways of beasts, or the techniques of long-dead warrior sages.
Initiate CR 1
Human monk 2
LN Medium humanoid
Init +2; Senses Perception +7
AC 15, touch 15, flat-footed 12 (+2 Dex, +1 dodge, +2 Wis)
hp 13 (2d8+4)
Fort +4, Ref +5, Will +5
Defensive Abilities evasion
Speed 30 ft.
Melee unarmed strike +3 (1d6+2) or unarmed strike flurry of blows +2/+2 (1d6+2) or mwk shortspear +4 (1d6+2)
Ranged mwk light crossbow +4 (1d8/19–20) or mwk shortspear +4 (1d6+2)
Special Attacks flurry of blows, stunning fist (2/day, DC 13)
Str 15, Dex 14, Con 12, Int 10, Wis 15, Cha 8
Base Atk +1; CMB +3; CMD 18
Boon Initiates can assist the PCs in a single fight or offer the PCs free temporary lodging at their academy.
Initiates are the novice members of martial arts academies or monasteries, learning hand-to-hand fighting, agility, meditation, and humility at the hands of their masters. They may spend their entire lives in the monastery, honing their minds and bodies to perfection.
Initiates can serve as bodyguards in areas where weapons are forbidden or as unconventional foot soldiers and skirmishers. They could also be used as unarmed brawlers, boxers, gladiators, or pit fighters.
Exchanging an initiate's monk bonus feats creates NPCs with different combat abilities, such as Catch Off-Guard and Throw Anything for an improvised weapon master, Improved Grapple for a wrestler, or Scorpion Style for different unarmed combat flavor.
An initiate may be found escorting a pair of acolytes (CR 3), or four initiates could be responsible for protecting a group of six pilgrims on a pilgrimage to a distant temple (CR 9). A group of six initiates might be encountered traveling between two monasteries (CR 6), or five initiates could form a training class under the tutelage of a battle monk (CR 7).
Battle Monk CR 4
Human monk 5
LN Medium humanoid
Init +2; Senses Perception +12
AC 19, touch 18, flat-footed 16 (+1 armor, +2 Dex, +1 dodge, +1 monk, +4 monk)
hp 32 (5d8+10)
Fort +6, Ref +7, Will +9; +2 vs. enchantment
Defensive Abilities evasion; Immune disease
Speed 40 ft.
Melee unarmed strike +5 (1d8+1) or unarmed strike flurry of blows +5/+5 (1d8+1) or kama +5 (1d6+1) or kama flurry of blows +5/+5 (1d6+1)
Ranged mwk light crossbow +6 (1d8/19–20)
Special Attacks flurry of blows, stunning fist (5/day, DC 16, fatigued)
Str 13, Dex 14, Con 12, Int 10, Wis 18, Cha 8
Base Atk +3; CMB +6; CMD 22
SQ fast movement, high jump, ki pool (6 points, magic), maneuver training, slow fall 20 ft., high jump
Boon A battle monk can assist the PCs in a single fight (or send several initiates) if it serves the interest of her academy or her master. A battle monk could also introduce the PCs to the master of her academy or to a diplomat, merchant, or other NPC from the land where her martial art originated.
Battle monks are the instructors in fighting schools and monasteries, teaching the arts of agility and swift perfection to their students. They are also the honor guard for their masters, the messengers and emissaries of the school and its methods.
Battle monks make excellent thief-takers and mid-level bounty hunters, catching and disabling their quarry and bring them back for questioning. A battle monk can also serve as an unarmed, but still dangerous and effective, bodyguard.
A battle monk often has a trio of initiates with her (CR 6), or two battle monks might accompany a holy warrior affiliated with the school (CR 8).
Master CR 14
Human monk 15
LN Medium humanoid
Init +3; Senses Perception +23
AC 25, touch 24, flat-footed 22 (+1 armor, +1 deflection, +3 Dex, +5 monk, +5 Wis)
hp 112 (15d8+45)
Fort +12, Ref +13, Will +15; +2 vs. enchantment
Defensive Abilities improved evasion; Immune disease, poison; SR 25
Speed 80 ft.
Melee unarmed +15/+10/+5 (2d10+3/19–20 plus 1d6 electricity) or unarmed flurry of blows +17/+17/+12/+12/+7/+7 (2d10+3/19–20 plus 1d6 electricity) or kama +14/+9/+4 (1d6+3) or kama flurry of blows +16/+16/+11/+11/+6/+6 (1d6+3)
Ranged +1 sling +15 (1d4+4)
Special Attacks flurry of blows, quivering palm (DC 22), stunning fist (16/day, DC 22, fatigued, sickened, staggered)
Str 17, Dex 16, Con 14, Int 10, Wis 20, Cha 8
Base Atk +11; CMB +18 (+22 to trip); CMD 38 (40 vs. trip)
Feats Gorgon's Fist, Greater Trip, Improved Critical (unarmed strike), Improved Trip, Improved Unarmed Strike, Improved Vital Strike, Lunge, Medusa's Wrath, Power Attack, Scorpion Style, Skill Focus (Acrobatics), Snatch Arrows, Spring Attack, Stunning Fist, Vital Strike, Weapon Focus (unarmed strike)
Skills Acrobatics +25 (+60 jump), Climb +10, Escape Artist +10, Heal +10, Knowledge (history) +5, Knowledge (religion) +5, Perception +23, Profession (gardener) +10, Sense Motive +20, Stealth +20, Survival +6, Swim +10
SQ abundant step, fast movement, high jump, ki pool (12 points, lawful, magic), maneuver training, slow fall 70 ft., wholeness of body
Combat Gear oil of align weapon (2), potion of cure light wounds (2) Other Gear kama, +1 sling with 10 bullets, amulet of mighty fists (shock), belt of physical perfection +2, bracers of armor +1, cloak of resistance +1, headband of inspired wisdom +2, monk's robe, ring of protection +1
Boon Masters can lend their own and their school's reputation to the PCs, granting a +2 bonus for 1 month on Leadership checks to attract followers or to attract a monk cohort.
Masters are the undisputed champions of unarmed combat, able to focus their inner strength into a single devastating blow or a barrage of attacks that leave their enemies dazed and reeling. A master can be a unique arena champion or an emissary from a distant empire. Masters may travel with a cohort of 10 battle monks from their academy (CR 16).