The Genius Guide to the Death Knight (PFRPG) PDF

****½ (based on 5 ratings)

Our Price: $3.99

Add to Cart
Facebook Twitter Email

The death knight is a champion of the grave, serving to spread the power of death throughout the lands of the living. Most death knights are the chosen warriors of gods of undeath and decay, evil psychopaths who desire nothing more than to see the “mistake” of life replaced by the glorious, unchanging “blessing” of undeath. Though unquestionably evil, these death knights are often confused as to why anyone would wish to be alive, since life is a condition that leads to hunger, exhaustion, pain, and suffering. Undeath is the perfect state of existence, but even normal death is obviously better than struggling through a life. To these death knights, they are bringing a gift to all living creatures, even if they have to do it one murder at a time.

However, a very few gods of true death also empower death knights specifically to preserve the sanctity of the grave and oppose the forces of the undead. Though the gods of repose have many names in many cultures, the death knights often refer to their divine sponsors as “the Grey Mistress” and see her as a personification of the state of death itself. To these death knights death is a calm, cool mistress who eventually envelops all things, and undeath is an insult to her. Though such death knights have little care for the living, and are not of good alignment, they can sometimes serve as allies to life-loving champions who must oppose a powerful undead force. Though they see life as a lesser state of being than death, they also see it as a temporary one and know their Grey Mistress will eventually enwrap all living things in her pale embrace.

Product Availability

Will be added to your My Downloads Page immediately upon purchase of PDF.

Are there errors or omissions in this product information? Got corrections? Let us know at store@paizo.com.

PZOPDFRGGOWC5155E


See Also:

Average product rating:

****½ (based on 5 ratings)

Sign in to create or edit a product review.

****( )

With a weight of 17 pages (two going to the cover and OGL/Credits pages), this PDF introduces us to the SGG answer for the Death Knight, an alternate class option, as opposed to an entirely new class. Essentially what we have here is a new skin for the anti-paladin, and an interesting skin to say the least.

Death Knights fall to two camps, those who respect the natural order of things, and those who want to watch it all crumble to ash, no matter how we get there. Alignments range from the neutral range through evil, with no good aligned death knights walking the planet anywhere (and seriously, who would want to cripple such a great idea with a good alignment anyway?). Presented with a small assortment of new feats, this was one of the areas I would have loved to see expanded upon, and expect to eventually see addressed in a future Bullet Point (hint hint). We are also given an assortment of new spells (the death knight casts from the anti-paladin spell list), with the majority of the spells focusing on Grave Summoning (in all nine of its levels) which allows for one to summon an undead to aid you. Grave Summoning easily dominates the entire spell section, both with the individual entries, and the chart detailing all of the available undead at the varying levels, as well as rules for customizing the lists by adding more undead for a more personal flair.

Amusingly one of the most interesting things covered within this PDF is not in regards to the death knight themselves, but to what is known as The Low Road, an extra-planar region wherein the souls of the dead travel to their final rest, a "highway" of the dead if you will, completely cut off from the living and organic, accessible only in the concept of summoning from, and even then only by those who would know it exists, as no mortals have ever truly witnessed it to be able to tell of it, as it can only be witnessed by the dead themselves. An interesting concept, and a great addition to the fluff of a campaign world in explaining why the other ethereal realms aren't choked full of the souls of the departed. Presented in such a way that a GM can easily leave it out if it isn't right for their campaign world though, as it is all fluff, with no crunch to have to work around, which was an excellent move on the part of Owen.

The class, if you can call it that as it blatantly states it is an alternative to the anti-paladin, using a great many of the anti-paladin class frameworks, has great flavor to it, and brings to the table an interesting build...but it also feels very much like there is more to be done here. Perhaps later down the road a revisit to the Death Knight will see it developed more through either new feats, spells, or class abilities...perhaps even all three. What is presented here is solid and good material, and it very much leaves you wanting more for this concept though, and that is exactly what a good design should do, leave you wanting more.

Found only one editing/grammar hiccup, a reference to death knights when it should have been death knight (I know, tiny mistakes right? lol), but was sad to see no bookmarks. Artwork is fairly decent, and spread throughout the PDF, far more than I expected to see actually.

Finalizing with a 4.5 star, that I shall round down to 4, as the no bookmarks, and potential to do so much more with this one kept it from a 5 for me. Now, having said that, this is still an excellent product, and a great base work for a character of this nature, and well worth the price of admission.


3. 5 stars - solid alternate class that could sue some additional options

***( )( )

This pdf is 17 pages long, 2/3 of a page front cover, 1 page editorial/SRD, leaving 15 1/3 pages of content, so what exactly do we get?

Basically, the Death Knight is a new 20-level variant alternate base-class of the Antipaladin. To be more precise, it's a rather major overhaul and thus feels rather distinct, but let me start with the basics: Death Knights get d10, 2+ Int skills per level, good BAB, good fort and will-saves and access to limited spells of up to 4th level.

Death Knights come essentially in two flavors: Adherents of Undeath, destruction and foes of life make for the classic, evil death knight. Somber protectors of the dead and their resting places and devoted foes of undead are the other group. While the latter can be neutral, no good death knights exist. Each type of death knight gets its own spelled-out, precise codex, which is nice and something missing from most knight-style-classes.

The class, as can be expected from SGG, comes with several interesting signature abilities: For example, the ability to attack with gravestrikes, which work against living and undead targets. these strikes provide additional damage. Another source of damage he has is the touch of corruption, which enables him to heal undead and cause wounds with his touch attacks. Over the course of a death knight's career, they gain several immunities. In fact, they can select from a total of 15 immunities, which all hearken to what one would expect from the dead - a growing resiliency against cold damage, immunities to negative conditions etc. Since one can choose which immunities to gain, this makes for the imho best "gradual-transformation-to-undeath"-take I've seen in a class. Being a variation of the paladin, the death knight also gets auras, all of which are rather neat. At 5th level, they can choose from two bonds: The first one lets the Death Knight enhance his weapon via the spirits of the dead, while the second grants the death knight an undead servitor from the Low Road.

The Low Road? Yeah, but more on that later. The Death Knight gets 3 new feats, one of which is practically obligatory in my opinion: Deadly steed grants you a rather cool mount as a cohort. We also get a feat for extra immunities and one that grants the death knight a dazzling gaze attack.The pdf also contains 17 new spells, 9 of which are the new Grave Summoning-spells, which can call undead from the pale road to serve you. Since the concept of the pale road is so entwined (purely via fluff) with these spells, I'll get to it here: The final (and best) section of this pdf introduces the Low Road.

Ever thought about why the ethereal and astral plane aren't cluttered with the spirits of the recently departed? Why a plane shift can't simply bring back dead comrades? Well, it's because they go to a demi-plane bordering on the astral and shadow planes, where they find their way to their afterlives in the outer planes. This concept, while rather simple, enables the neutral death knights to have undead servitors without upsetting the natural order: Their undead are souls lost on the way to the afterlife and, once their summoning ends, they get another chance to find their final resting place. Nice concept that fills a hole in the cosmology! Even better, we get advice on adding new undead to the roster of summonable creatures. The other spells enable you to emit mists that impede vision if you want them to, masquerade as one of the living and one that lets you teleport between corpses/resting places via the pale road. This last spell, while immensely cool, also has a downside - it lets you enter the pale road (which is supposed to be utterly off-limits for just about everyone and everything). You also become aware of ALL tombs/resting places of the kind you entered and may only exit via one of them, which e.g. means that if you entered via a dwarven tomb, you may only exit via one. While the awareness of ALL resting places in range is something potentially problematic for DMs, I think the limits imposed on the spell make it a manageable task.

Conclusion:
Editing and formatting are top-notch, though I did miss one rather major component: The death knight spell-list is absent from this pdf. While I assume the antipaladin- list as the default, not having the information in this pdf is somewhat of a bummer. Layout adheres to a 3-column full-color standard and the cover artwork, as with all recent SGG-books, is AWESOME. And with all recent SGG-books, I'd love to see a version of the artwork without the title etc. to show to my players. The pdf has no bookmarks, which is a minor bummer.

This is a hard pdf to rate. On the one hand, I LOVE the way in which the class handles a (partial) undead-transformation and utilizes the immunities. I also am enamored with the concept of the Low Road. On the other hand, though, I feel that the class is less than it easily could have been: Why is e.g. the steed a feat and not a 3rd possible death bond option? Why are there so few death bond options? And while the immunities are a neat way to customize the class, it feels more linear than similar SGG-classes. What I also doesn't get is why there is not more synergy with SGG's Death Mage - while thankfully the spells also feature e.g. their respective levels for the Death Mage, that's all. All in all, the Death Knight, while not a bad class, feels not too exciting, which is rather strange considering the awesome concept. In fact, while the fluff is utterly awesome, when compared to other SGG-classes, the central class-mechanics feels somewhat uninspired. Don't get me wrong, but in the end e.g. the armiger makes mechanically for the more enticing tank-class - at least for me and for now. If SGG ever releases a pdf for the Death Knight/Mage with feats, archetypes etc., similar to their stellar "Hellfire Magic", perhaps, this class could easily be expanded to become awesome. As written, the relative linearity of the class in combination with the lack of bookmarks and spell-list drags down the otherwise stellar supplemental content. Try as I might, I can't bring myself to rating this a full 4 stars and thus will settle for a final verdict of 3.5 stars, rounded down to 3.

Endzeitgeist out.


Amazing Alternate Class for Anti-Paladin

*****

This product is 17 pages long with 1 page of credits / OGL, leaving 16 pages of content. It adheres to the SGG standard 3 column lay out with the standard 2/3 cover image. Alright, with that out of the way, let's get into the meat of the product, shall we?

Death knights are an alternate class for the anti-paladin, making them pretty unusual in that regard. It is worth noting, however, that they do not require being chaotic evil, in fact, they don't require being evil at all. There are 2 types of death knights, evil ones who revel in the undead and in slaying the living, and neutral ones who try and maintain the sanctity of the grave. Beyond that, they're a pretty typical paladin construct, d10 hd, 2 + int skills, martial weapons & heavy armor, same good saves as a paladin, etc. You get the idea.

But when you get to their abilities, you can see the inspirations, but oh my they're unique. And flavorful. I don't want to give away everything so I'll give you a couple examples. The first level aura that paladins put out, the holier than thou aura and anti-paladins unholier than thou aura is changed for the death knights to have an undeader than thou aura, but it isn't just a flavorful aura, it allows them to determine hit points and fortitude saves as an undead would. (So cool.) One more example their smite ability has broader applications than the paladin's or anti-paladin's, but isn't nearly as powerful.

I could go on about this class, but really, I shouldn't need to. If you're a DM wanting someone to lead an army of undead, or if you're a player who likes the idea of fighting to maintain the sanctity of death (or vice versa) , or if you just want to see one of the most imaginative paladin takes in a long time, by all means pick this up, you will not be disappointed. 5 star product all the way.


Better and better

*****

I liked this product right from the gate, and the more I read it, the more I liked it. Like the description says, it's an alternative to the anti-paladin, which is an alternative paladin. But really, this class is good enough to stand on its own with only a tip of the hat to its ancestors.

The first four levels make the Death Knight seem a bit front loaded, but I'll be the first to admit I'm not very good at evaluating the crunchy bits. I'm a flavor guy, which is why I love how the descriptions are generic enough to make this an effortless drop into any setting. The "Low Road" and "The Grey Mistress" all have a sepulchral ring to them without labeling them as belonging to any particular milieu.

The Death Knight makes a perfect villain, possibly even better than the Anti-paladin itself. A being focused on the spreading of death at any cost, even using the risen dead to further his ends makes for a formidable foe if not stopped in time.

So get your affairs in order, and make sure your family will be well provided for after your demise. Death comes not on silent wings or with a scythe gripped in bony hands, but thundering on a black steed in blood stained armor with an army of the living dead at his beckon call. The bell is tolling.


Bringing this into Carrion Crown

*****

I've been playing Pathfinder for a little over 2 years now, and- despite the great materials out there and the hard work that goes into all of it- this is the first time I've felt the need to write a review.

This class is dripping with flavor, and the mechanics are built to match. The evil Death Knight is a murderous take on the Anti-Paladin, giving a new perspective on the 3.5 idea of the Paladin of Slaughter, while the neutral version is more akin to a defender of the balance of life and death.

The non-evil Code of Conduct is perfect for a Paladin of Pharasma type of character, while the evil one is great for any nihilistic, vengeful, or otherwise murderous villain in a campaign.

I'm going to be reworking some characters- allies and foes alike- in the Carrion Crown AP to use this class. Well worth the PDF price!


1 to 50 of 79 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | next > last >>
Contributor

Now available!

Grand Lodge

Is this essentially the Pathfinder update to the 3.5 template? Obviously not literally the same thing because it's not OGL, but still.


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber

Based on the product description, this sounds like a base class.

Paizo Employee Starfinder Design Lead

The death knight is an alternate class for the antipaladin, itself an alternate for the paladin core class. Making use of and altering numerous facets of the antipaladin alternate class, this dread warrior can’t truly be considered a new character class in its own right. By the changes made here, though, the details and tones of the antipaladin are shifted in a completely opposite direction and capture an entirely different fantasy theme, without needlessly designing an entire new class.

While a redesign of sorts, this alternate class can be used just as any of the other base classes.

Role: Evil death knights are villains at their most dangerous – cunning
and linked to the vast fiendish and eldritch forces of undeath. Though they ultimately slay any living creature that associates with them, they
see this as a favor rather than a betrayal. Their dark, powerful, brooding nature often attracts the service of necromancers, cultists of
death gods, and evil witches with dread patrons – despite the long history of such death knights killing everyone and everything. Even those death knights unable to lure breathing allies to their side are often seen by undead as worthy equals, and even worthwhile masters.

Neutral death knights are generally agents of supernatural powers that need them to serve as guardians, judges, or avengers. No less able as
champions of the grave, neutral death knights see the undead as a violation of the natural order, and are as opposed to them as they are to tomb raiding and desecrations of corpses. Neutral death knights are actually less likely to build organizations of followers or close allies, despite their willingness to let the living come to a natural (rather than untimely) demise. But when a powerful enough undead threat looms, death knights are often willing to submit themselves to the orders of others, albeit temporarily, to achieve their goals.

The book includes the Death Knight alternate class, three new feaqts (Deadly Steed, Extra Immunity, Icy Gaze of Death), new anti-paladin spells with deathly themes (death knell, greater; disintegrate undead; grave summoning I to IX*); mask of life; pale mists; spectral eye; take the Low Road; and vigor of the grave), and a brief description of the paths dead spirits use to reach the afterlife, the Low Road.

*No, anti-paladins don't get 5th and higher spells. But they do get grave summoning I to IV, and the rest are used if the death knight takes a lost soul servant with the deathly boon class feature.

15 pages, +1 page cover and +1 page credits, for 17 total pages.


Does the death knight have any special way to communicate with the Deathly Bond servant? I know that paladins etc can free action handle their mounts with Handle Animal, but I don't think Handle Animal works on zombies. (Although THERE's a feat idea...)


Yet one more PDF I just have to get. This one looks like it'll make for great villains or protagonists for a (very dark) game.

Paizo Employee Starfinder Design Lead

Cheapy wrote:
Does the death knight have any special way to communicate with the Deathly Bond servant? I know that paladins etc can free action handle their mounts with Handle Animal, but I don't think Handle Animal works on zombies. (Although THERE's a feat idea...)

The deathly bond servant works off the grave summoning spells, which give you the power to control your lost soul servant, if you can communicate with it. Of course like a paladin's warhorse, you can summon your servant a set no. of times per day.

So if you get a mindless undead, it pretty much attacks the nearest foe. You may well not want it around if you aren't killing things. But as early as you get the deathly boon, your lost soul can take the form of a ghoul or draugr, which speak common. As you gain higher levels, you get even more speaking undead options for your lost soul.


I can see a real use for this in my Eberron campaign. Great compliment to a Bone Knight Cavalier I found. Karnnath is a nasty country to mess with, lol.


so there is no alignment restrictions on the death knight?


They can be any non-good.

The neutral ones can be warriors for the gods of repose.

Paizo Employee Starfinder Design Lead

Lunamaria Hawke wrote:
so there is no alignment restrictions on the death knight?

Not quite. As Cheapy mentioned, they cannot be of any good alignment.

Evil death knights tend to be anti-life killers, marking time until they become undead themselves.

neutral death knights are generally agents of gods of true death and peace (Gods with the repose domain). They see the living as largely outside their perview, until the living mistreat the dead. To these death knights, true undead is an abomination.

Which, oddly, means the opposite of a death knight is a death knight, but it's evil vs neutral, rather than good vs evil.

I kept that much more relaxed alignment restriction in mind as I designed the rest of the class. But in general evil death knights can be used like antipaladins, and neutral death knights may even make acceptable PCs.


Purchased! I'm envisioning a Dhampyr Death Knight as either a villain when I run, or a character if the appropriate campaign ever shows up.

Paizo Employee Starfinder Design Lead

Eric Hinkle wrote:

Yet one more PDF I just have to get. This one looks like it'll make for great villains or protagonists for a (very dark) game.

Yep, those are the two roles I had in mind when I wrote this. And mask of life can help either move around a city with a lost soul servant.


**Hates his empty game budget coffee can**

Paizo Employee Starfinder Design Lead

xorial wrote:
I can see a real use for this in my Eberron campaign. Great compliment to a Bone Knight Cavalier I found. Karnnath is a nasty country to mess with, lol.

Certainly the death-empowered warrior is a pretty broad archetype with lots of utility, which is one reason I wanted to write this.


It's a Christmas miracle! I can't wait to dive into this, now that I have one of my very own!


1 person marked this as a favorite.

This isn't an actual review (yet), but let me just say the hive mind of gamers is alive and well. The Death Knight absolutely fits the idea for the villain of an upcoming adventure, and the concepts of the Pale Road and the Low Road also slot perfectly into the cosmology of my homebrew!

Paizo Employee Starfinder Design Lead

DungeonmasterCal wrote:
This isn't an actual review (yet), but let me just say the hive mind of gamers is alive and well. The Death Knight absolutely fits the idea for the villain of an upcoming adventure, and the concepts of the Pale Road and the Low Road also slot perfectly into the cosmology of my homebrew!

I'm glad you liked it! (And, obviously, look forward to your review).


Interesting... We have the Time Thief (skillful type), and the Time Warden (chronomancer). We have the many godlings (skillful, warriors, casters and more!). There's the dragonrider (warrior) and (hopefully!) eventually the dracomancer (caster). And now we have the Death Mage (caster) and the Death Knight (warrior).

I really like how you guys explore these niches from many perspectives, and it makes me wonder if there are plans for the other SGG classes to get this treatment. An Umbral Mage? Mosaic Warrior? The Dedicated Abjurer, a caster exploring the same area as the armiger? The Witch Protector?


Cheapy wrote:

Interesting... We have the Time Thief (skillful type), and the Time Warden (chronomancer). We have the many godlings (skillful, warriors, casters and more!). There's the dragonrider (warrior) and (hopefully!) eventually the dracomancer (caster). And now we have the Death Mage (caster) and the Death Knight (warrior).

I really like how you guys explore these niches from many perspectives, and it makes me wonder if there are plans for the other SGG classes to get this treatment. An Umbral Mage? Mosaic Warrior? The Dedicated Abjurer, a caster exploring the same area as the armiger? The Witch Protector?

The Mosaic Warrior sounds awesome. That could be something that my players would use. Even a Mosaic Archetype for the Magus (Paizo Version) and the Vanguard.

Silver Crusade

Grave strike seems a little odd to me. Presuming this is the smite feature of the class, what was the thinking process behind having it work the way that it does?

Also, does the bonus to hit remain at +1 or does it scale in some way?

Paizo Employee Starfinder Design Lead

Blayde MacRonan wrote:
Grave strike seems a little odd to me. Presuming this is the smite feature of the class, what was the thinking process behind having it work the way that it does?

Since grave strike applies against all living creatures and all undead (pretty much everything but objects and constructs), it applies to a much broader range of targets than smite evil or smite good. As a result, it's utility per strike it reduced to make sure it is no more effective as a whole than the smite options antipaladins and paladins get at the same time.

Further, a death knight is, overall, a tougher customer than a paladin or antipaladin, with the option to Cha-pump (oddly making Con a dump stat) an immunities rather than mercies or cruelties. Given the death knight is likely to be around longer in a fight and is likely to be a better spellcaster (with a big reward for a high Cha), his offense doesn't need as much punch as a pal/antipal.

This combines with the fact that unlike pals and antipals, the death knight has some option to make his weapon bane (against undead, or any humanoid) with his boon, and grave strike's reduced effectiveness balances nicely.

Blayde MacRonan wrote:
Also, does the bonus to hit remain at +1 or does it scale in some way?

No, it intentionally stays at +1. A death knight that wants to continue to be more weapon-oriented at higher levels has spells and the weapon-boosting boon to keep him competitive.

Silver Crusade

Interesting.

Thank you for the reply. As always, having a glimpse into the reasoning goes far to clearing up specific details.

Now I can get back to working on my Ghost Rider-esque NPC for Carrion Crown. I'm using this to replace something in the last adventure.

Spoiler:

General Seylok as a nightwalker nightshade doesn't work for me. General Seylok, former paladin turned Death Knight by Tar-Baphon, taught the secrets of hellfire and made a graveknight, that's far more interesting to me. I'll have to post him up for you to look at when I'm done.

Paizo Employee Starfinder Design Lead

Blayde MacRonan wrote:
Thank you for the reply. As always, having a glimpse into the reasoning goes far to clearing up specific details.

Always happy to answer questions!

Blayde MacRonan wrote:
Now I can get back to working on my Ghost Rider-esque NPC for Carrion Crown. I'm using this to replace something in the last adventure.

When your players are writhing in SGG-detailed horror, I hope you'll give them all a big cheesy grin from me. :D

Spoiler:
Blayde MacRonan wrote:
General Seylok, former paladin turned Death Knight by Tar-Baphon, taught the secrets of hellfire and made a graveknight, that's far more interesting to me. I'll have to post him up for you to look at when I'm done.

A graveknight death knight with chastising lash, nightmarish transport and penance skull, perhaps? I look forward to seeing it!


Blayde MacRonan wrote:

Interesting.

Thank you for the reply. As always, having a glimpse into the reasoning goes far to clearing up specific details.

Now I can get back to working on my Ghost Rider-esque NPC for Carrion Crown. I'm using this to replace something in the last adventure.

** spoiler omitted **

That reminds me, I do need a way to get the PCs in my CC game to level 4...hmm.....

reads the class again

Paizo Employee Starfinder Design Lead

Cheapy wrote:
Interesting... We have the Time Thief (skillful type), and the Time Warden (chronomancer). We have the many godlings (skillful, warriors, casters and more!). There's the dragonrider (warrior) and (hopefully!) eventually the dracomancer (caster). And now we have the Death Mage (caster) and the Death Knight (warrior).

Heh. I hadn't looked at it exactly like that, but I do see your point.

Cheapy wrote:
I really like how you guys explore these niches from many perspectives, and it makes me wonder if there are plans for the other SGG classes to get this treatment. An Umbral Mage? Mosaic Warrior? The Dedicated Abjurer, a caster exploring the same area as the armiger? The Witch Protector?

While I don't have plans for most of those (I confess, there is a master abjurer-style class in playtesting), they are all interesting ideas. Certainly if there was a sign of interest, I could see producing any of those.


The master abjurer class has been something I've wanted for a long time. I love support classes :)

Originally I liked the idea of the umbral mage due to strong biases, but I suppose the Death Mage has that part covered.

But a mosaic warrior would be really cool too. The concept reminds me of that Okami game.

Dark Archive

Is the Master Abjurer going to be anything like a less-broken Abjurant Champion?

Paizo Employee Starfinder Design Lead

Grey Lensman wrote:
Purchased! I'm envisioning a Dhampyr Death Knight as either a villain when I run, or a character if the appropriate campaign ever shows up.

Certainly a dhampir death knight would make an interesting combo! The undead-themed resistances would obviously stack, though the dhampir's nature ability to detect undead is pretty well overshadowed by the death knight's ability to do so at will.


Owen K. C. Stephens wrote:
Grey Lensman wrote:
Purchased! I'm envisioning a Dhampyr Death Knight as either a villain when I run, or a character if the appropriate campaign ever shows up.
Certainly a dhampir death knight would make an interesting combo! The undead-themed resistances would obviously stack, though the dhampir's nature ability to detect undead is pretty well overshadowed by the death knight's ability to do so at will.

Owen, I suspect this will be a better combination after Paizo's Blood of the Night supplement for Dhamphyr's comes out with all the nifty options.


Bladesinger wrote:
Owen, I suspect this will be a better combination after Paizo's Blood of the Night supplement for Dhamphyr's comes out with all the nifty options

There is always the Raging Swan book as well. Bwahahaha!


I think you mean Raging Swan.


So I did. Corrected. Too many 3PP's to choose from. Oh well, I'd rather have too many good things to pick from than not enough.

Paizo Employee Starfinder Design Lead

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Bladesinger wrote:
Owen, I suspect this will be a better combination after Paizo's Blood of the Night supplement for Dhamphyr's comes out with all the nifty options.
Grey Lensman wrote:
There is always the Raging Swan book as well. Bwahahaha!

Yeah, this is one of the nice things about the OGL and having a common game system in pathfinder. Different 3pp can each take a stab at the things that they have passion for, and customers can combine them as they desire.

Paizo Employee Starfinder Design Lead

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Matthew Winn wrote:
Is the Master Abjurer going to be anything like a less-broken Abjurant Champion?

I think it would be closer to the mark to describe it as the inquisitor of arcane magic... but it may morph a lot before it gets out of playtesting.


Cheapy wrote:
I think you mean Raging Swan.

You are correct Sir. I have this supplement and in fact one of my players is using it. We are playing on Scarn and he and his Necromancer buddy are from Hollowfaust. Interestingly enough he was playing a "Death Knight" using Super Genius Games Templar Class. Now we get to convert to this extremely awesome version!!!

Paizo Employee Starfinder Design Lead

Bladesinger wrote:
We are playing on Scarn and he and his Necromancer buddy are from Hollowfaust. Interestingly enough he was playing a "Death Knight" using Super Genius Games Templar Class. Now we get to convert to this extremely awesome version!!!

I *love* Hollowfaust, though I've never used it in my campaigns. I think Death Knights would go perfectly there, though death templars are certainly a cool idea too.


I love all of the choices that 3pp offer. I try to work as much in as possible, and read as much as possible, great stuff! You can almost never have too many options.

Paizo Employee Starfinder Design Lead

Many thanks to agnelcow for our first Paizo review!

Dark Archive

Owen K. C. Stephens wrote:
Matthew Winn wrote:
Is the Master Abjurer going to be anything like a less-broken Abjurant Champion?
I think it would be closer to the mark to describe it as the inquisitor of arcane magic... but it may morph a lot before it gets out of playtesting.

Can you do *both*? I'm greedy

EDIT: or I could try it myself. Hmm... maybe as an "abjurant magus" archetype

Silver Crusade

1 person marked this as a favorite.

General Sey'lok as a graveknight of death made a big impression on the Ulfen paladin in the Carrion Crown campaign. He had already encountered one creature calling itself by that name, but that guy went down like a punk so he was somewhat dismissive of this version (we'll call him "True Sey'lok"). However, when True Sey'lok cancelled out his smite evil (corruption resistance), he re-evaluated his opinion real quick. And as the general escaped the fight, he'll be back to face down the paladin in the future...

So, as promised, I present my version of General Sey'lok, as the graveknight of death.

Spoiler:

Clad in charred armor adorned with spikes and screaming souls over its surface, this grim rider has a flaming skull floating where its head should be.

General Sey'lok
Male half-orc advanced graveknight death knight 15
NE Medium undead (human, orc)
Init +6; Senses darkvision; Perception +30
Aura sacrilegious (DC 25, 30 ft.)

AC 31, touch 12, flat-footed 29 (+13 armor, +2 Dex, +6 natural)
hp 315 (15d10+165) (105 Cha +15 Toughness +15 favored class +30 desecrate)
Fort +20, Ref +16, Will +20; Defensive Abilities channel resistance +4, rejuvenation; DR 10/magic; Immune cold, electricity, fire, undead traits; SR 28

Speed 30 ft.
Melee +5 keen grayflame ghost touch adamantine falchion +33/+28/+23 (2d4+23/15-20 plus 3d6 fire plus 1d6 divine) or
chastising lash +28/+23/+18 (1d6+19 plus 3d6 fire) or
flaming burst spiked gauntlet* +28/+23/+18 (1d6+14 plus 4d6 fire; *greater fiend barbs)
Special Attacks channel destruction (3d6 fire), channel negative energy (DC 25, 8d6), devastating blast (Reflex DC 25, 10d6 fire), grave strike (+1 to hit, +3d6 damage), undead mastery
Spell-Like Abilities (CL 15th; concentration +22)
At will – detect undead
Death Knight Spells Prepared (CL 12th; concentration +19)
4th – nightmarish transport (already cast), penance skull (already cast)
3rd – burst of speed (x2), deadly juggernaut, greater fiend barbs (already cast)
2nd – chastising lash, corruption resistance, undetectable alignment, vestment of the champion
1st – bane, hellfire armament (x2), litany of sloth (x2)

Str 32, Dex 15, Con - , Int 14, Wis 22, Cha 24
Base Atk. +15; CMB +26; CMD 38
Feats Combat Reflexes, Deadly Finish, Devastating Strike, Following Strike, Improved Initiative*, Improved Vital Strike, Mounted Combat*, Ride-By Attack*, Step Up, Step Up and Strike, Toughness*, Vital Strike
Skills Diplomacy +21, Intimidate +19 (+24 to demoralize foes), Perception +30, Ride +14, Sense Motive +24, Stealth +20 (+18 due to ACP); Racial Modifiers +10 Intimidate, +10 Perception, +8 Ride
Languages Abyssal, Common, Draconic, Orc
SQ aura of darkness, aura of death, aura of despair, aura of murder, aura of repose, bestial, cruelty (sickened, staggered, cursed, stunned [Fort DC 25]), deathly boon (weapon), intimidating, phantom mount, ruinous revivification, touch of corruption (7d6, 14/day), unholy resilience, weapon familiarity
Gear +4 death knight plate (treat as Hellknight plate), +2 keen grayflame adamantine falchion (Zar'thos), belt of giant strength +4, cloak of resistance +2

I made him a half-orc because the name Sey'lok has a distinctively orcish sound to it. Bar-Taphon used the orcs of Belkzen as part of his war-machine to take Ustalav. And as the orcs are known to breed half-orcs for the purpose of command roles, I figured that this guy displayed a ruthlessness that went beyond anything normally exhibited by his kin to attract the Whispering Tyrant's notice to become one of his generals. And that quality was rewarded not only with being made one of his elite (death knight) but with undergoing the ritual that made him a powerful undead. Add to that the fact he has learned the secrets of using hellfire (learned from the Tyrant himself) and you've got the ingredients for a powerful recurring foe.

Anyway, I hope you enjoy seeing this as much as I enjoyed using him (and I did give my players a big cheesy grin for you, btw.) The look on my players faces when I said "he swings his large curved sword that flickers with ash-gray flame once in a deft stroke" (grave strike+vital strike+his previous channeled energy) went from 'Whaaa...?' as I picked up 6d4 and 7d6 to roll (for 80 total damage) to 'Holy Crap!' when the victim (the dhampir sorceror) blew their Fort save and died without benefit of stabilization thanks to Deadly Finish. And to think I almost went with conductive instead of grayflame for his sword Zar'thos (hope you like the name).

EDIT: I know nightmarish transport is supposed to be only used on the bonded mount, but I used it on his phantom mount instead to great effect.


O M G.

Very nice indeed!

Silver Crusade

Kryzbyn wrote:

O M G.

Very nice indeed!

Coming from you, Kryzbyn, that is a true compliment.

I can only hope that Mr. Stevens likes it as much as you do.


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Owen K. C. Stephens wrote:
Further, a death knight is, overall, a tougher customer than a paladin or antipaladin, with the option to Cha-pump (oddly making Con a dump stat) an immunities rather than mercies or cruelties. Given the death knight is likely to be around longer in a fight and is likely to be a better spellcaster (with a big reward for a high Cha), his offense doesn't need as much punch as a pal/antipal.

Is this the reason that the grave summoning spells prohibit summoned undead from using any spells and spell-like abilities, and for that matter teleportation abilities, in addition to not allowing them to using summoning powers?

I ask because that seems like it can be a crippling restriction. A summoned devourer, for instance, loses a lot of utility if it can't use its spell-like abilities (why else would it devour souls?).


Alzrius wrote:


Is this the reason that the grave summoning spells prohibit summoned undead from using any spells and spell-like abilities, and for that matter teleportation abilities, in addition to not allowing them to using summoning powers?

I ask because that seems like it can be a crippling restriction. A summoned devourer, for instance, loses a lot of utility if it can't use its spell-like abilities (why else would it devour souls?).

"I summon an intellectual nommer!"

Paizo Employee Starfinder Design Lead

Alzrius wrote:

Is this the reason that the grave summoning spells prohibit summoned undead from using any spells and spell-like abilities, and for that matter teleportation abilities, in addition to not allowing them to using summoning powers?

I ask because that seems like it can be a crippling restriction. A summoned devourer, for instance, loses a lot of utility if it can't use its spell-like abilities (why else would it devour souls?).

A big reason to prevent spells and spell-like abilities from being used is to prevent the spell being a no-brainer for wizards and witches, who could use it to summon a creature that itself had spellpower, and could cast multiple spells for them, quite possibly at a higher spell level than the original caster.

This kind of issue is avoided in summon monster/summon nature's ally by either just not putting such creatures on the chart, or avoiding specific powers. But to be honest, there just aren't that many undead in the appropriate CR ranges. I already had to do a lot of playtesting to figure out how to balance incorporeal undead being summoned.

As for the mechanics of the devourer in particular, remember that grave summoning isn't calling normal undead. It's calling forth lost souls that manifest as undead, then go back to the Low Road. So if the devourer-lost-soul is eating souls, it's just draining lifeforce in a vampiric fashion. That's (and its energy drain) are plenty effective for a summoned monster without the summoner getting 13 "free" spells in the bargain as well.

Paizo Employee Starfinder Design Lead

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Blayde MacRonan wrote:
Kryzbyn wrote:

O M G.

Very nice indeed!

Coming from you, Kryzbyn, that is a true compliment.

I can only hope that Mr. Stevens likes it as much as you do.

He's awesome!

I may spring that build on my own players, I like it so much.

Silver Crusade

Owen K. C. Stephens wrote:
Blayde MacRonan wrote:
Kryzbyn wrote:

O M G.

Very nice indeed!

Coming from you, Kryzbyn, that is a true compliment.

I can only hope that Mr. Stevens likes it as much as you do.

He's awesome!

I may spring that build on my own players, I like it so much.

Wow!

I don't blush very often, but this is one time that I did.

That may be the best compliment I'll ever receive on these forums.

Thank you for your kind words. And please... feel free to use him. Knowing that one of my builds is going to be used in one of your games fills me with all kinds of warm fuzzies.

Paizo Employee Starfinder Design Lead

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Blayde MacRonan wrote:
That may be the best compliment I'll ever receive on these forums.

Heheh. I suspect my players are going to have less complimentary things to say... which, of course, will count as compliments.

Blayde MacRonan wrote:
Thank you for your kind words. And please... feel free to use him. Knowing that one of my builds is going to be used in one of your games fills me with all kinds of warm fuzzies.

And that's the *only* was the horror you designed is going to create warm fuzzies. :)

Seriously, it's a nice build, and I'm thrilled to see it.


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Adventure Path Subscriber
Owen K. C. Stephens wrote:
A big reason to prevent spells and spell-like abilities from being used is to prevent the spell being a no-brainer for wizards and witches, who could use it to summon a creature that itself had spellpower, and could cast multiple spells for them, quite possibly at a higher spell level than the original caster.

But isn't that already the case with the spells that summon outsiders?

Admittedly, if it's a problem for the run-of-the-mill summon monster spells, then there's no reason to repeat that mistake here. However, if you don't view this as being a problem for "normal" summoned monsters, this seems more like a needless restriction than a solution.

1 to 50 of 79 << first < prev | 1 | 2 | next > last >>
Community / Forums / Paizo / Product Discussion / The Genius Guide to the Death Knight (PFRPG) PDF All Messageboards

Want to post a reply? Sign in.