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Hi guys, just finished the first draft of my new homebrew class 'Guerilla', my first original class after working on Multiclass Archetypes and other sub-classes.
I'm looking for some input as to what could be done to improve or balance it, I -think- I've got it fairly balanced when drawn up against the newer martial based classes, but I don't want to presume that just because one class seems powerful in one regard they all must follow the same format.
A little blurb about this class; it's designed to be adaptive, self-sufficient, and a jack of all trades. Not so much in the sense it's a sneaky magic fighter, more so that it is capable of overcoming challenges with a little improvisation and cunning, having a broader skills set rather than something more refined. I've based the class mainly from other classes that offer similar playstyles, but do not fully realise the concept, mainly Rogue, Alchemist, Investigator, Brawler, Bard, Slayer and Ranger. I plan to release some archetypes alongside this class down the line, such as Arsonist, Mechanic and Ambush Artist.
So, here's the basic draft I created, anything constructive you have to offer would be most helpful, since this is a new challenge for me! (I do understand that the tables are a little hard to read, the forum doesn't seem to support tables or tab-spaces between text.)
Whether a travelling nomad or a savage outlander, or perhaps a renegade living outside the law, Guerrillas are masters of survival and self-sufficiency. Their ability to improvise and adapt as the situation demands allows them a great degree of versatility, easily overcoming challenges where others would be defeated. The heart of their unpredictable nature lies in their ability to create unconventional weapons and equipment from their surroundings, and enhance their application through methods both crude and cunning. While they lack a magical affinity, they make up for their absence of arcana through use of special bombs that unleash devastating explosions that destroy and disrupt as effectively as any spell. Guerrillas are the perfect companion for situations where the odds aren't in your favor, turning even the most mundane of objects into a potent weapon and harsh environments into a devastating arena of combat.
Role: Guerrillas are best suited to situations that require versatility, both inside and outside of combat. Their ability to improvise in almost any situation allows them to be flexible combatants, and are able to drastically change the course of combat with their crudely made bombs and weaponry.
Hit Die: d8
Starting Wealth: 3d6 × 10 gp (average 105gp.) In addition, each character begins play with an outfit worth 10 gp or less.
Class Skills: Appraise, Craft, Disable Device, Disguise, Knowledge (Dungeoneering), Knowledge (Engineering), Knowledge: (Geography), Knowledge (Nature), Profession, Sleight of Hand, Stealth, Survival, Use Magic Device
Skill Ranks Per Level: 6 + Int modifier.
LEVEL BAB FORT REF WILL DMG SPECIAL
1 +0 +2 +2 +0 1d6 Improvised Arsenal, Survivalism, Bomb 1d6, Trapfinding
2 +1 +3 +3 +0 1d6 Guerrilla Trick, Crude Combatant
3 +2 +3 +3 +1 1d6 Swift Assembly, Bomb 2d6, , Trap Sense +1
4 +3 +4 +4 +1 1d8 Endurance, Guerrilla Trick
5 +3 +4 +4 +1 1d8 Clever Construction (Modifications), Bomb 3d6
6 +4 +5 +5 +2 1d8 Guerrilla Trick, , Trap Sense +2
7 +5 +5 +5 +2 1d8 Bomb 4d6
8 +6/+1 +6 +6 +2 1d10 Guerrilla Trick
9 +6/+1 +6 +6 +3 1d10 Clever Construction (Bomb Energy), Bomb 5d6, , Trap Sense +3
10 +7/+2 +7 +7 +3 1d10 Advanced Tricks, Guerrilla Trick
11 +8/+3 +7 +7 +3 1d10 Jack of all Trades, Bomb 6d6
12 +9/+4 +8 +8 +4 2d6 Guerrilla Trick, , Trap Sense +4
13 +9/+4 +8 +8 +4 2d6 Clever Construction (Cold Iron and Silver), Bomb 7d6
14 +10/+5 +9 +9 +4 2d6 Guerrilla Trick
15 +11/+6/+1 +9 +9 +5 2d6 Bomb 8d6, , Trap Sense +5
16 +12/+7/+2 +10 +10 +5 2d8 Guerrilla Trick
17 +12/+7/+2 +10 +10 +5 2d8 Clever Construction (Adamantine), Bomb 9d6
18 +13/+8/+3 +11 +11 +6 2d8 Instant Assembly, Guerrilla Trick, , Trap Sense +6
19 +14/+9/+4 +11 +11 +6 2d8 Bomb 10d6
20 +15/+10/+5 +12 +12 +6 2d10 Master survivalist, Guerrilla Trick
Weapon and Armor Proficiency:
A Guerrilla is proficient with all simple weapons, bombs and any improvised weapon. He is proficient with light armor and shields (except tower shields).
A Guerrilla is a versatile combatant, utilising his surroundings to improvise weaponry to devastating effect. He gains Throw Anything and Catch Off-Guard as bonus feats, meaning that he no longer suffers penalty for using improvised weapons. In addition, improvised weapons gain a critical threat range of 19–20, with a critical multiplier of ×2. Improvised weapons wielded by the Guerrilla are considered to be both improvised and manufactured for the purposes of feats and abilities.
A Guerrilla also deals more damage with his improvised weapons than others, as shown on Table; Guerrilla. The improvised weapon damage values listed on that table are for Medium Guerrillas. A Small Guerrilla deals less damage than the amount given there with her improvised weapon attacks attacks, while a Large Guerrilla deals more damage; see the following table.
LEVEL SMALL LARGE
1-3 1d4 1d8
4-7 1d6 2d6
8-11 1d8 2d8
12-15 1d10 3d6
16-19 2d6 3d8
20 2d8 4d8
If an improvised weapon deals more base damage than that of the Guerrilla's Improvised Arsenal ability, he may substitute that damage instead. This must be declared before the Guerrilla makes an attack with such a weapon.
Guerrilla's aren't just masters at improvising weapons in the field, but also at improvising other equipment. At 1st level, a Guerrilla may substitute her Survival skill in place of any Craft skill that creates player equipment, such as alchemy, bows, traps, weapons and armor. By doing so, he gains a proficiency bonus to Survival equal to his Guerrilla level when crafting items in this fashion.
However, items crafted this way are a crude comparison to properly designed wares, and are always produced as though affected by the Craft Shoddy Item feat. This ability does not confer a bonus to the Guerrilla's Craft skills, nor does it prevent a Guerrilla from selecting this feat through other means. Any weapons or armor fashioned this was count as being improvised for the sake of feats and abilities.
In addition, the competence bonus may be extended to any Survival skill check that requires gathering, cooking, setting up camp or otherwise creating produce, protection or shelter.
Just as an Alchemist can create bombs from alchemical materials, a Guerrilla may fashion crude explosives from similar substances. The process of creating these bombs follow a more situational approach than academic, and thus use Wisdom in place of Intelligence. A Guerrilla can use a number of bombs each day equal to his class level + his Wisdom modifier. Bombs are unstable, and if not used in the round they are created, they degrade and become inert.
Drawing the components of, creating, and throwing a bomb requires a standard action that provokes an attack of opportunity. Thrown bombs have a range of 20 feet and use the Throw Splash Weapon special attack. Bombs are considered weapons and can be selected using feats such as Point-Blank Shot and Weapon Focus. On a direct hit, a Guerrilla’s bomb inflicts 1d6 points of fire damage + additional damage equal to the Guerrilla's modifier. The damage of a Guerrilla's bomb increases by 1d6 points at every odd-numbered Guerrilla level (this bonus damage is not multiplied on a critical hit or by using feats such as Vital Strike). Splash damage from a bomb is always equal to the bomb’s minimum damage (so if the bomb would deal 2d6+4 points of fire damage on a direct hit, its splash damage would be 6 points of fire damage). Those caught in the splash damage can attempt a Reflex save for half damage. The DC of this save is equal to 10 + 1/2 the Guerrilla’s level + the Guerrilla's Wisdom modifier. although bombs are classified as improvised weapons, the Guerrilla does not apply the damage bonus from Improvised Arsenal to any bomb attacks.
A Guerrilla adds 1/2 his level to Perception skill checks made to locate traps and to Disable Device checks (minimum 1). A Guerrilla can use Disable Device to disarm magical traps.
As a Guerrilla advances, he learns new tricks that expand his versatility. At 2nd level, and every 2nd level thereafter, a Guerrilla may select one Guerrilla Trick from the pool below. Except where otherwise noted, each Guerrilla Trick can only be selected once.
- Bomb Discovery: The Guerrilla may select any Alchemist Discovery that affects bombs, treating his Guerrilla level as his Alchemist level. This Trick can be taken multiple times
- Rogue Talent: The Guerrilla may select any Rogue Talent (except those that affect Rogue/Ninja-specific abilities), treating his Guerrilla level as his Rogue level. This trick can be taken multiple times.
- Ranger Trap: (prerequisite: Level 4) The Guerrilla gains the Learn Ranger Trap feat, expending one of his daily allotments of bombs to create it. Ranger traps created this way may use the Improvised Arsenal damage values in place of their standard damage values. This Trick can be taken multiple times
- Weather-Worn: (prerequisite: Level 4) The Guerrilla no longer suffers ill effects of hot or cold climates, as though under the effects of the Endure Elements spell.
- Sabotage: The Guerrilla may apply the effects of Trapfinding to other mechanical objects, gaining a bonus to Knowledge (Engineering) in addition Disable Device.
- Honed Weaponry: The Guerrilla may cast the Refine Improvised Weapon, Desperate Weapon and Disguise weapon spells as spell-like abilities a number of times per day equal to 2 + his Wisdom Modifier
- Jury-Rigging: You may grant Survivalism's proficiency bonus to the Knowledge: (Engineering) skill checks to create objects in addiiton to craft skills
- Makeshift Munitionist: You gain Gunsmithing as a bonus feat, and may use your Survivalism skill to craft firearms and their ammunition.
- Bonus Feat: You may select from the following pool of feats in place of a Trick; Improvised Weapon Mastery, Improvised Defense, Torch Fighter, Equipment Trick, Improvisational Healer, Field Repair, Chairbreaker, Nature's Weapons, Tool Optimiser, Two-Weapon Drunkard Combat, Improved Dirty Trick, Quick Dirty Trick, Dirty Trick Master, Greater Dirty Trick, Underhanded Teamwork, Improved Underhanded Teamwork and Mud in Your Eye. The Guerrilla must have the Base Attack Bonus and any feats listed here as requirements of gaining the feat, he may otherwise choose them without meeting any other prerequisites.
- Track: The Guerrilla gains the Ranger's Track Ability, using his Guerrilla level in place of his Ranger level.
- Handy: You may grant Survivalism's proficiency bonus to any Profession skill checks to create objects in addition to craft skills.
Crude Combatant (Ex):
At 2nd level, the Guerrilla learns how to effectively fight dirty. He adds his Dexterity modifier in addition to his Strength modifier when calculating his Combat Manuever Bonus for Dirty Tricks.
Swift Assembly (Ex):
At 3rd level, a Guerrilla can create shoddy items with astounding speed. It takes a Guerrilla half the normal amount of time to create shoddy items with his Survivalism ability.
Trap Sense (Ex):
At 3rd level, a Guerrilla gains an intuitive sense that alerts him to danger from traps, granting him a +1 bonus on Reflex saving throws to avoid traps and a +1 dodge bonus to AC against attacks by traps. At 7th level and every 3 levels thereafter, these bonuses increase by 1 (to a maximum of +6 at 18th level).
A Guerrilla gains Endurance as a bonus feat at 4th level.
Clever Construction (Ex):
At 5th level, the Guerrilla learns how to adapt and improve his improvised weapons to better challenge the variety of foes he may face. He gains the ability to add one weapon modification to his improvised weapons, so long it replicates the base weapon required in the modification's prerequisites. The weapon does not change from simple to martial, nor martial to exotic when modified as base weapons do.
At 9th level, he may also sacrifice one of his bombs to give his improvised weapon the flaming special ability for a number of minutes equal to his Guerrilla level, or the flaming burst special ability for a number of rounds equal to his Guerrilla level. If a Guerrilla has any bomb discoveries that alter his bomb's energy, he may instead replicate a matching special ability (Acid Bomb granting Corrosive/Corrosive Burst, Forst Bomb granting Frost/Icy Burst, etc.)
At 13th level, his improvised weapons are treated as cold iron and silver for the purpose of overcoming damage reduction.
At 17th level, his improvised weapons are treated as adamantine for the purpose of overcoming damage reduction.
At 10th level, and every two levels thereafter, a Guerilla can select an Advanced Trick in place of a Guerrilla Trick. Unless otherwise noted, a Guerrilla cannot select an individual Trick more than once.
- Advanced Talents: The Guerrilla may select a Talent from the list of Advanced Rogue Talents (except those that affect Rogue/Ninja specific abilities), treating his Guerrilla level as his Rogue level.
- Swift Tracker: (Prerequisite; Track) The Guerrilla gains the Swift Tracker ability of Rangers, using his Guerrilla level in place of his Ranger level.
- Lanch Trap: (Prerequisite; Ranger Trap) A Guerrilla can affix a magical ranger trap to an arrow, crossbow bolt, or thrown weapon, allowing him to set the trap remotely or use it as a direct attack. Attaching the trap to the projectile is part of the action of creating or setting a new trap. The trapped projectile is fired or thrown in the normal manner. If fired at a square, the trap is treated as if the Guerrilla had set the trap in that square, except the DC is 5 lower than normal. If fired at a creature, the target takes damage from the ranged weapon and is treated as if it had triggered the trap (saving throw applies, if any). The attack has a maximum range of 60 feet, and range increments apply to the attack roll. The duration of the trapped projectile starts from when it is created, not from when it is used.
- Woodland Stride: Move through natural undergrowth at normal speed and without taking damage or suffering any other impairment.
- Guerrilla Camouflage: (Prerequisite; Terrain Mastery Rogue Talent) Hide in any of your favored terrains, even without cover or concealment.
- Artificer: You may apply your Survivalism ability to any Crafting Feats, such as Craft Wand and Craft Construct.
- Seasonal Sage: (Prerequisite; Weather-Worn) For a number of hours per day equal to your Wisdom modifier, you may extend your Weather-Worn Trick to affect allies as if using Communal Endure Elements.
Jack of All Trades (Ex):
At 11th level, the Guerilla can use any skill, even if the skill normally requires him to be trained. At 16th level, the Guerrilla considers all skills to be class skills. At 19th level, the Guerrilla can take 10 on any skill check, even if it is not normally allowed.
At 20th level, a Guerrilla becomes a master of self-sufficiency and survival. Whenever a Guerrilla uses his Survivalism ability, he is no longer forced to apply the Craft Shoddy Item feat to his creations (unless he chooses to), though they retain all the benefits of being improvised.
In addition, whenever a Guerrilla makes an attack with an improvised weapon or bomb, he may perform a Dirty Trick against his foe as a free action once per turn.
Making one slight change.
I'm removing Equipment Trick from the list of Bonus Feats and creating a Guerrilla Trick from it;
- Dangerous Instruments: You may select one equipment type from the Equipment Trick feat. You may use all of it's associated equipment tricks without meeting the prerequisites.
Personally don't feel like bombs are the right flavour (or for that matter, guns with the makeshift munitionist trick) for a fantasy survivalist. I'd be more inclined to borrow from the horizon walker prestige class: Give favoured terrains and favoured terrains can can count as favoured enemies vs creatures native to that terrain. Personal preference though: archetypes are around for a reason. Besides that, seems kind of weird to have all these abilities based around improvised weapons and then make a major damage source not use them.
As is, feels like there's a lot of rogue toe-treading. I'd scrap the advanced rogue talents.
It's not clear whether you need the feats or not for the Artificer Advanced talent. It's pretty strong regardless, and might do better to make it master craftsman-like. Also craft wand is a bad example since you actually need the spell access and can't fake it.
Might suggest removing advanced talents completely; swift tracker could be level 8 to be on par with ranger, ditto woodland stride (both of these even earlier possibly), Seasonal Sage is hardly game breaking if you got it at 4th. Launch trap is the only one that needs level 10, and the others I've already addressed.
Seems pretty reasonable otherwise; something I might use in the right sort of campaign.
Thanks for the feedback Wolin,
Bombs to me seemed like a good ability to have for guerrilla warfare style fighting, and allows for greater versatility through the use of different discoveries. Unlike alchemists, these bombs are far cruder, relying on wisdom instead of intelligence. The original vision I had in mind was akin to molotov cocktails and pipe bombs, something that fit the improvisation theme. It also helped tie into the crafty nature of the class to help distance it from being a purely martial class like rogues or brawlers.
Bombs do in fact make use of the class abilities, though they do not benefit from the damage bonus from Improvised Arsenal. This is to avoid bombs being able to reach absurd damage potential (10d6 +2d10 seems a little OP for me)
the Artificer Advanced Trick was intended to allow crafting feats to benefit from the same cost reduction as normal goods, and applying the same weaknesses. I may need to amend the description better and exclude feats that rely on spells to function. But to answer your question, you don't need any feats as a prerequisite, but it would have little function without at least one.
As for the Guerrilla Tricks, I see what you mean about toe-treading. I implemented advanced talents since the Slayer class also borrowed them, and I feel the class could benefit from accessing them. The class shouldn't be too broken in doing so since it cannot access talents that effect sneak attack or other rogue-specific abilities. Guerrilla Tricks were partially based off Slayer Talents, allowing access to certain external class mechanics by 'spending' a point on them so to speak.
Amendments to current Tricks and some new ones;
- Bonus Feat: You may select from the following pool of feats in place of a Trick; Improvised Weapon Mastery, Improvised Defense, Torch Fighter Improvisational Healer, Field Repair, Chairbreaker, Nature's Weapons, Tool Optimiser, Two-Weapon Drunkard Combat, Improved Dirty Fighting, Dirty Trick, Quick Dirty Trick, Dirty Trick Master, Greater Dirty Trick, Underhanded Teamwork, Improved Underhanded Teamwork and Mud in Your Eye. The Guerrilla must have the Base Attack Bonus and any feats listed here as requirements of gaining the feat, he may otherwise choose them without meeting any other prerequisites.
- Artificer: You gain an Item Creation Feat as a bonus feat. Your Guerrilla level counts as your Caster Level when meeting the prerequisites. Item Creation Feats may be affected by Survivalism if the Guerrilla so chooses.
- Expanded Arsenal: (Prerequisite level 6) Your Improvised Arsenal damage extends to any Simple Weapon that is not enchanted, modified or otherwise different to its base values.
- Armor Modder: (Prerequisite level 6) You can use your Clever Construction ability apply Armor Modifications to any Light Armor you are wearing. This Light Armor must be crafted with the Survivalism feat in order to work.