Bonuses for a Player who Just Got Knighted


Advice


My players just discovered a chamber deep in an untamed forest where an Erlking and his wife had been sleeping for millennia. My dad's elf hunter spoke the command word to awaken them, and the first proclamation that the Erlking made was that the hunter would now be a Knight of the Untamed Wood.

This was a huge moment for my dad, and honestly it wasn't something I thought through at all. It was a bit of spur-of-the-moment improv, and I have no idea what it might mean for my dad's character going forward. I think there should be some kind of conditional bonuses attached to it, like he just gained a trait, but I'm not sure what.

If there are any established rules for this sort of thing, point me there and I'll figure it out.

I do realize that now he is technically in service to a powerful fey creature, which could either be really good or really bad, depending on the character's sensibilities of right and wrong. Fey are capricious and unpredictable, and this particular Erlking was recovering from a war with a demon general, and his entire kingdom was practically destroyed. So he wouldn't be the most stable person in the first place, regardless of his creature type.

I also know that, for better or worse, this event has changed the world the PC's are in. With the Erlking's influence behind it, that forest is going to expand, and in a few months of in-game time it will have absorbed several small towns and a couple of larger cities within a few miles of its borders.

But for now I'd just like some ideas on what kind of boon my dad's character might get for being a knight of a brand-new kingdom that consists of exactly three people (the Erlking, his wife the Hamadryad, and my dad, the king's single current subject).

Any help or advice on this would be most appreciated.


Giving the knight a free trait or two wouldn't hurt. Ignore the normal rules for traits only allowing one per group at need. I'd focus on traits in one of a couple areas:

1) A +1/add a class skill booster, likely Diplomacy, but possibly something else like Sense Motive or even Survival.

2) Save booster, likely Will. Never hurts, maybe make it conditional that it works only against certain saves. A good way to rationalize it is that he's now got a little bit of protection thanks to the Erlking's power.

3) Use a druidic orison 1/day. He's now got a tiny smidge of magic.

A couple bonus traits aren't a huge boost in power, but a nice touch regardless. You could also do things that are more potent or druidic in nature, like the ability to speak with animals/plants (he can then talk with the denizens of the kingdom) or trackless step (to go where he wills without a trace).

Dark Archive

Pathfinder Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

How powerful do you want it to be?
Just honorific title? Free trait? Feats? Fey touched template?

If you don't want to unbalance things keep the bonuses low.

Also, if he's a hunter you could let him apply a template to his animal companion.


Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Companion, Maps, Modules, Roleplaying Game Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

As the first knight of the Erlking, that PC would be in a powerful leadership position once the kingdom starts to grow (which it should do quickly, as I could see many feys and intelligent woodland creatures being drawn to join in). Maybe you could give him a free Leadership feat, with command over these subjects that can only be overridden by the Erlking or his wife. His cohort could be a fey or woodland squire.

And you now have no shortage of adventure hooks, as they can be driven by any combination of direct orders from the Erlking and the PC's own interest in trying to keep things peaceful between this new forest kingdom and the civilization that it is encroaching upon.


It could be more of a roleplay thing than having a mechanical benefit.


The erlking could give him the gift of a mythic mount. Perhaps a warhorse or hippogriff. See Legendary Games Mythic Mounts.


I mean, you yourself already said just the roleplay aspect is huge in meaning without any mechanics,
so I don't really see why adding some Trait or Feat or whatever is the sort of thing that makes it more profound.
Probably I would just approach it as looking towards custom magic items to make available,
which would follow rules and all (gifts count to WBL just as much as loot) but really tie into the roleplay.
Maybe like granting Fey and speak with animals/plants and some minor fey type ability or immunities/bonus.
Or possibly custom Feats you can let him choose to take, this makes the mechanic aspect more of a conscious buy in,
rather than "OMG throw free mechanics at him, that will be so awesome!" this could be Fey-Magical Steed as mentioned
or other things that you figure would fit with his build in various directions and match roleplay niche.
More so, I would focus on what the Fey King will be DOING and what tasks the PC might help them in.
Planting/Spreading new magical forest? Retrieving magical items? Seeking out and Diplomatizing dispersed allies to rejoin Kingdom?
I think that is what matters most, irrespective of if you offer any special mechanics/loot.


Paizo Charter Superscriber; Pathfinder Deluxe Comics Subscriber; Pathfinder Legends Subscriber; Pathfinder Tales Subscriber; Starfinder Charter Superscriber

Congratulations to your player! Do you have to address him as Sir Player now?

(SCNR)


Zaister wrote:

Congratulations to your player! Do you have to address him as Sir Player now?

(SCNR)

Well, I don't, but the other players might.


How would the other players feel though if this one gets access to things which they may not be able to achieve?


Knowledge (nobility) as a class skill?

And/or choose something from a fey bloodline sorcerer?


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Circumstance bonus to Diplomacy and Intimidate against those who respect (if not necessarily like) the Erlking's authority in the matter at hand.

If you want to play up the fey aspect, some small supernatural boon should suffice, such as 1 round of woodland stride per day or something.


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don't know if you've ever read the Dresden Files by Jim Butcher, but the main character becomes the Winter Knight of the Winter Court Fey, which made him resistant to pain & cold, a little stronger, and a few other things. GREAT Series.

in the AP The Reign of Winter, Baba Yaga's (Fey Witch Queen) Black Rider passes his mantle of powers to be divided among the PC's, which at first gives each PC a +2 to an ability score of their choice and Cold Resistance 5. This happens a the end of book one, PC's at level 3 or 4.

based on what you've said, your dad would be Summer Court Fey, what i would do to start, depending on level, is tell your he always seems to have grass in his hair (hair is actually turning to lush, green grass- maybe a bonus to hide in woodland surroundings), and give him barkskin that scales & caps at the same rate the spell actually does. other things would have to be level dependent, too.
give the other PC's the option to become subjects of the Summer Court. this does not grant any powers, they have to earn it as your father did.


As Name Violation says, "How powerful do you want it to be"?

Without knowing how large an area this wilderness area is perhaps give him the ability to use Commune With Nature (confined to this wood) some number of times a week or month or ...

In general I'd shoot to link the Untamed Wood to whatever ability/reward he gains. If done this way keep in mind the potency of the reward will vary with how often the party finds itself adventuring within the Wood.


Adventure Path Charter Subscriber
blahpers wrote:

Circumstance bonus to Diplomacy and Intimidate against those who respect (if not necessarily like) the Erlking's authority in the matter at hand.

This is probably all that is necessary, really. Maybe set up an affiliation (http://www.d20pfsrd.com/gamemastering/other-rules/affiliations/) where you can define perks and expectations.

Sovereign Court

Pathfinder Adventure Path, Campaign Setting, Modules Subscriber; Pathfinder Comics Subscriber

I like templates.

Give the whole party the fey-touched template.


I've gotten a lot of great ideas here. Thank you all.

I'm not too worried about him getting things to which the other players won't have access. The sorceress (my mom) recently met an ancestor of hers, an ancient silver dragon, who gave her a powerful magical artifact (basically a beefed up version of a Headband of Alluring Charisma +6), and I plan on taking the rest of the players through similar character-specific story arcs that will net them some pretty sweet rewards. This one just happened to work for my dad at the time.

Here's my idea so far (feel free to tell me if it's too much): Give him a part of the Fey-touched template, but reduce the Dex bonus to +2 instead of +4. He'll still get DR = 1/2 HD, and I'll let him add Barkskin to his spell list as a free spell (since Hunters are like Sorcerers in their limited spell knowledge, and that spell seems appropriate).

I'll also let him have an aspect of the Noble Born trait, so he'll get a +2 bonus (or more, maybe add Diplomacy as a class skill) on Diplomacy checks made to deal with fey creatures (this bonus will extend to checks made when negotiating on the Erlking's behalf), and a +1 bonus to Will saves against Fey spell effects.

Also I'd like to point out that everyone in the party is 10th level, and they don't have a lot of gold, so most of the rewards they've been getting over the past several levels have been quest-related (it just hasn't made sense for gold to fall out of zombie dinosaurs or flying Qlippoth).


The Feysworn PrC could provide some relevant inspiration (offer entry without meeting prereqs?). Alternatively, in addition to some loot/bonuses you could offer the chance for a free rapid character rework to an appropriately themed class such as the Green Knight.

Grand Lodge

There's a couple of fitting Cavalier orders.

Order of the Beast (from ACG) gives Wild Empathy
Order of the Green gives Favoured Terrain

You could grant the cavalier order for free, or you could have him take his next four levels in Cavalier (Hooded Knight) and then take the Horse Master feat.

See my reference document on Cavalier dip for Horse Master


Though the examples are generally based on less powerful benefactors, NPC Boons may offer ideas / inspiration, as they include flavourful perks.


GeraintElberion wrote:

I like templates.

Give the whole party the fey-touched template.

The Fey Animal template for the hunter's animal companion would also be appropriate (and not OP IMO, it's only a +1 to CR).


i'm glad your not going full fey-touched template. That would unbalance the CR of your dad vs what the rest of the party has. Once they all start their character-specific story arcs you can start expanding whatever sweet ideas you plan on giving them. Also think the Fey Animal idea is gold.


Land.

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