Dreamscarred Press Monster Classes!


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I'm pleased to announce (though some of you already know) that Dreamscarred Press is now tackling a new area of class design: Monster Classes.

These classes are intended to work slightly differently than our normal affairs, with the goal being to introduce classes that allow you to play as the monster class until you reach (generally) the appropriate CR of the monster in question. In addition, the introduction of these monster classes goes into a little bit about how their design philosophy differs slightly from normal play. While these monster classes should generally be perfectly playable alongside regular classes, we decided to err more on the side of allowing players to emulate the monster they're playing.

That all aside, the first PDF of our first monster class is now available here. Although it's worth noting that it should be receiving an update within the next 48 hours to clear up some wording issues that came up (So expect it to be better by 1/23/16-ish).

I hope you all enjoy and thanks for the support!


I am definitely interested in seeing what kind of monsters this will let me play as. Will keep an eye on this for sure.


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So we had a pretty famous (at least in our circles) game using these rules when they were still a fan creation. A few 3rd party devs in on it (Mike Myler, Christos Gurd, etc) and it was hilarious as all hell. One thing I will note is that we had to do significant on the fly modifications to some of these classes because they were WAY stronger than their CRB counterparts (I played a vampire and it was pretty gross). Some were a little under powered and a some where VERY overpowered. It's great to see DS pick this up but I am not envious of them trying to power balance this (I assume this is coming later as the initial version didn't look much changed). Best of luck! Can't wait to buy the finished product!


Scott_UAT wrote:
So we had a pretty famous (at least in our circles) game using these rules when they were still a fan creation. A few 3rd party devs in on it (Mike Myler, Christos Gurd, etc) and it was hilarious as all hell. One thing I will note is that we had to do significant on the fly modifications to some of these classes because they were WAY stronger than their CRB counterparts (I played a vampire and it was pretty gross). Some were a little under powered and a some where VERY overpowered. It's great to see DS pick this up but I am not envious of them trying to power balance this (I assume this is coming later as the initial version didn't look much changed). Best of luck! Can't wait to buy the finished product!

Well as always, we want our products to be playable alongside other material in Pathfinder so we'll hopefully be able to stick to that as much as possible. However, as I noted above, this time around we erred more on the side of allowing players to use the abilities of the monster rather than sacrifice their unique flavor(s) in the name of "balance."

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I'm excited this for this to be released. I hope everyone enjoys it!


There's a guy I used to play with who would be very excited about this. I remember there being rules for playing Trolls and Bugbears and other crazy creatures back in 3.5, but I forget which splat book that was in. I'm glad to see that stuff return, if only so that I can customize monsters for my party.


I spent the 15 bucks to get in on this. So far, I like the way the Astral Deva looks, and am certain that i prefer the spellcasting option over the spell-like ability option.
So, taking a level in bard for my 2nd level, then dropping back into astral deva for my 3rd level will mean i am casting as a level 3 bard, correct (assuming spellcasting option)?
The natural armor boost is nice. I'd say maybe too nice, but I am going to try running a monster campaign in the next couple of months, so that is relative.


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Maps, Rulebook Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

My main concern with the Astral Deva would be allowing them to gain armour proficiency from dipping into other classes on top of their already large Natural Armour bonus. I also think that the stun ability might be a bit too powerful given the insanely high DC from ability score increases but other than that, it seems reasonably tame if you use the spellcasting option as suggested.

I look forward to seeing your work updated!


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Air0r wrote:

I spent the 15 bucks to get in on this. So far, I like the way the Astral Deva looks, and am certain that i prefer the spellcasting option over the spell-like ability option.

So, taking a level in bard for my 2nd level, then dropping back into astral deva for my 3rd level will mean i am casting as a level 3 bard, correct (assuming spellcasting option)?
The natural armor boost is nice. I'd say maybe too nice, but I am going to try running a monster campaign in the next couple of months, so that is relative.

Hi, Monster Classes editor here! I'm glad you like it. We hoped that the variant would serve as both a way of toning down some of the classes (ones with powerful, at-will spell-like abilities) and toning up some others (ones with decent but not great spell-like abilities, that could really use the assist in versatility to become truly playable).

The original upload of the astral deva PDF had erroneously left out the full rules for the monster classes. The way the spellcasting works is that if you take a level in a class with the appropriate type of magic, you can opt to continue gaining your monster class' progression or to keep the new class':

Quote:
Some monster classes, such as the astral deva, allow the character to trade their native spell-like abilities for a spellcasting progression. If such a character later gains levels in a spellcasting class of the same type (arcane, divine, or psychic), the character can opt to continue the progression of their monster class, rather than gaining spells from the new class. The character gains new spells per day and an increase in caster level and spells known as if he had also gained a level in their monster class (even if the monster class does not have that many levels). This replaces the new class’ spellcasting progression in its entirety, including the ability to use spell completion and spell-trigger items as a member of that class. A class that only casts spells at a later level than 1st (such as the ranger) only stacks the levels where it gains spellcasting.

So for an astral deva, which casts divine spells off the cleric list (albeit at a slower progression), you would end up casting as a 2nd-level astral deva and a 1st-level bard.

If you took 2 levels of astral deva, then 1 level in cleric, warpriest, inquisitor, or the like, then you could choose to either cast as a 3rd-level astral deva (gaining the other class features but not that class' spell progression) or as a 2nd-level astral deva and a 1st-level character of that class.


I had misread their spellcasting; I saw the line about spells per day and spells known as a bard and somehow mentally tossed out the previous paragraph that was telling me that the cleric spell list was being used.

New question: You described that for some of the monster classes abilities had to be removed and some toned down. so why not have those come back at full strength as Mythic feats?

Related text:
A few of the monster classes have had some of their more powerful abilities altered to become feats, available at a level where they would normally be accessible to a nonmonster character, or in a few cases, removed entirely or heavily downgraded.


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I downloaded the erinyes release today. I like it quite a bit. They get a lot in the way of ability score boosts, but that is fully expected. They definitely get more out of spellcasting than they do from the spell-like abilities, in my opinion. But I think the versatility that a spell list provides is much needed.


Air0r wrote:
I downloaded the erinyes release today. I like it quite a bit. They get a lot in the way of ability score boosts, but that is fully expected. They definitely get more out of spellcasting than they do from the spell-like abilities, in my opinion. But I think the versatility that a spell list provides is much needed.

With erinyes I think it's really tempting to go spellcasting but.... at will illusions and teleports are so tempting as well...


I really hope barghest is on the list of creatures getting this monster class treatment. Also, a bit surprised that my earlier question went ignored.


My apologies for not getting to it. The question wasn't quite ignored so much as it slipped through the cracks of other projects after being discussed.

We had considered using mythic feats for the "full" versions of abilities, but in the end, the options that were decided outright could not exist tended to be ones that were attached to monsters that we weren't able to make functional as a PC race within the constraints of our design goals (such as the pixie, which was a topic of much debate before being left on the cutting room floor). I actually cannot think of any abilities off the top of my head that were removed and not turned into some form of feat or later option.

In any case, we're unlikely to make them Mythic feats in the future if we do have such options. If something is workable as a higher-level feat, we would rather put it there rather than lock it away behind Mythic's doors, and if something is unworkable to the point that it can't have that done to it, it's likely to cause just as many problems in Mythic.

Regarding barghests: they're not going to be in this "wave" of monster classes, but if the Monster Classes project is well-recieved, we may put them out in the future.


Is this similar to a "Savage Species" adaption for PFRPG?


Pretty much, with a couple major differences (mainly how levels work).


Forrestfire wrote:
Pretty much, with a couple major differences (mainly how levels work).

*shudders at the memory of gaining HD every two levels instead of normal leveling*

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Milo v3 wrote:
Forrestfire wrote:
Pretty much, with a couple major differences (mainly how levels work).
*shudders at the memory of gaining HD every two levels instead of normal leveling*

lol, yes...that has changed. In this, the class gains a HD with each level and in most cases, it is broken down by the number of HD the typical monster has in its true form, or its form as listed in the Bestiary.


some very minor notes on two of the earth elemental's feats (like grammar small):

"Any attacks you make during that duration deal a additional points of acid damage equal to your level in the earth elemental monster class." -page 6

this line out of the Acidic Assault feet should say "an additional"

"transport yourself and willing targets to the one of the elemental planes." -page 6

This line remove the first "the".

"Once per round, while burrowing just below the surface, you can burst from the ground as a part of a move actiona move action." -page 6

This line just remove "move actiona".

There may be others, but those called to me. Keep up the solid work!


So, would an Ensnared Earth Elemental be a separate class, or an archetype to this one?


Are Earth Elementals able to use weapons, shields, and armor? Actually this is a broader question for many of your more weirdly shaped monsters that are going to get classes.


MORE QUESTIONS!!! Earth Elemental gains size changes as it gains in level. when it gains medium at level 4 it says it losses all bonuses and penalties based on size, and makes no mention of its ability scores, while all of its other size boosts call out that ability scores don't change AND that it's abilities and penalties based on size DO change.

So, does becoming medium size decrease dex and increase str OR is there a missing line of text?

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Air0r wrote:
Are Earth Elementals able to use weapons, shields, and armor? Actually this is a broader question for many of your more weirdly shaped monsters that are going to get classes.

An earth elemental is proficient with all simple weapons, but not with any type of armor or shield. :)


Air0r wrote:

MORE QUESTIONS!!! Earth Elemental gains size changes as it gains in level. when it gains medium at level 4 it says it losses all bonuses and penalties based on size, and makes no mention of its ability scores, while all of its other size boosts call out that ability scores don't change AND that it's abilities and penalties based on size DO change.

So, does becoming medium size decrease dex and increase str OR is there a missing line of text?

Earth elementals (and other monster classes) don't get ability score increases when they get a size-up, no. Those are built into the progression itself.


Pathfinder Lost Omens, Maps, Rulebook Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

In the interest in ironing out typos, the Satyr's "Pipes" ability is based off the "Harpy's" Hit Dice rather than the Satyr's Hit Dice.

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Thank you Jack!


When is the next release for this expected?


I'm surprised it's so hard for dryad's to get a new tree.

Publisher, Dreamscarred Press

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Air0r wrote:
When is the next release for this expected?

Should be this coming week - it will be the Hound Archon and Succubus.


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Love the latest installment. :)

One aside though, you have a reference to the astral deval in the 1st level magic resistance entry for the succubus.

Which I'm sure the succubus appreciates.


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I really hope that Barghest (including greater) and pseudodragon are upcoming; they are two of my favorites.


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Please let there be bulettes. Please let there be bulettes. I so want to have a roleplaying reason to eat evil halfing villages....


Just bought the $15 subscription bundle thing. I'm curious, any idea when the last monster class will be released?


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stormcrow27 wrote:
Please let there be bulettes. Please let there be bulettes. I so want to have a roleplaying reason to eat evil halfing villages....

Why would they have to be evil?


New questions!
in the true dragons release there is a curious feat chain: humanoid form followed by half-dragon form. seems super cool, though one line struck me as odd:
"natural weapons (though you can only retain the ones
appropriate to your new size)"
What does this mean exactly? what natural weapons would be inappropriate to your new size?
for example, by 3rd level any of the dragons in that release (and pseudodragons, oddly enough) can have these two feats selected. some would be tiny size (such as black dragons or copper dragons) and some small. because you are capable of selecting a medium form, would this mean that all of your natural attacks would be inaccesible at this point?
going the other way with this, once you get to higher levels your dragon form will be larger than medium...


While I do not own the PDF in question, Air0r, I read that line of text to pertain specifically to true dragons according to this table. If that differs from the progression of the dragon class, I'd think it still means to say that you retain natural attacks that you *would* have once you are that size. So according to the linked table, if you polymorph to Medium size as a Tiny black dragon, you'd retain bite and claws, as a Medium dragon has those attacks. By contrast, if you're a Large dragon taking a Medium form, you lose use of tail slap, since Medium dragons don't get one.

If I'm way off base, then oops and I'm sure a dev will correct me, but that was my take based on what you provided.


Noticed a spelling error in the Mystic Mimicry feat (in the Woodlands release): "This breath weapon takes the shape of a 60-foot line or a 30-foot cone, chosen when you breath."
breath should likely be breathe.

Additionally, speaking of pseudodragons:
What happens to their sting attack if they become larger (whether through spells or powers such as expansion, or even just aegis levels)? specifically, would it have reach?


Small detail related to the Imp's poison. You have it described as soporific, which means to induce drowsiness or sleep. Was this an accident?
Should the imp get an alternate spellcasting option like some of the other monster classes?

for the feats:
Powerful Gaze: "The range of the gaze attack for you chose for
Ability Focus increases by 30 feet."
'for' should be 'that'

I could swear I saw a random grammar bit that caught my eye earlier, but, can't find it again.

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