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[New Prestige Class For Review]

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Anonymous
February 25, 2005 4:06:33 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Druid of the North Claw
Prestige Class

The forest was frantic with motion as the hunter pursued his prey -
every leaf was a potential distraction, brushing in the wind as he
moved to strike down the huge beast, every falling snowflake a
momentary shield. He quickened his pace and drew his weapon as he saw
a flash of black fur, leaping forward to lay a skull-splitting blow
upon what he perceived as his prey...
His sword sliced through branch, brush, and... nothing. The
bear had taken a single, careful step to the side. As his momentum
carried him forward, a mighty paw ripped through the air to strike his
neck. As the world went black, he thought that no mere bear could do
that...
"Indeed..." As the world went black, he heard the grizzled
voice of an elderly man... "You were hunting no normal bear, lad."

The Order of the North Claw is one of four orders of devoted
totemists, who dedicated themselves at their inception towards a
totem creature. The Northrend Barbarians took it upon themselves to
follow the Bear, and they therefore laid claim to the title of North
Claw. The Order of the North Claw is the result - a small, united
troupe of dedicated, disciplined warriors who surprise many with their
ordered approach to warfare - and their skill in applying themselves
to it.
Druids of the North Claw tend to be bluff and short on words.
They teach through action as much through words, and their art is one
that lends itself to quiet, meditative study. They discourage overt
introspection - such inactivity does not engender one to acts of good
work, instead leading one to atrophy. They temper their philosophical
pursuits with a warrior's mein, and usually enjoy fellowship with one
another on a weekly basis - if there is another Druid of the Claw
within easy travelling distance. Though, for such hardy and rugged
individuals, a few miles of overland march may well considered 'easy'.
Most commonly, Rangers and some Barbarians become Druids of
the Claw. It doesn't often happen, but the way of the Barbarian is not
necessarily against the mind of the North Claw. The North Claw
recognise that a mindset steeped in only one true path cannot perceive
the nature of truth fairly.
It's common for Druids to adventure with groups - they know
that combat and conflict is the crucible in which their skills are
tested and improved - and as their bodies improve, so do their minds
and souls.
Hit Die: d8
Base Attack Bonus: 3/4
Base Save Bonuses: Good Fort and Will, Bad Reflex


Prerequisites
To qualify as a Druid of the North Claw, a character must
fulfill the following criteria.
Knowledge (Nature): 5 ranks.
Survival: 5 ranks.
Alignment: Lawful Neutral, Lawful Good, or Neutral Good.
Feats: Animal Affinity, Endurance.
Special: The prospective Druid of the North Claw must have met
with and been accepted by another Druid of the North Claw of at least
an Adept rank.

Class Skills
The Druid of the North Claw's class skills (and the key
ability for each skill) are Climb (Str), Concentration (Con), Craft
(Int), Handle Animal (Cha), Heal (Wis), Hide (Dex), Intimidate (Cha),
Jump (Str), Knowledge (nature) (Int), Listen (Wis), Move Silently
(Dex), Ride (Dex), Sense Motive (Wis), Spellcraft (Int), Spot (Wis),
Survival (Wis), and Swim (Str).
Skill Points at Each Level: 4 + Int modifier

Class Features
The following are the class features of the Druid of the North Claw
prestige class.
Weapon and Armour Proficiency: Druids of the North Claw gain
no additional proficiency in any weapon or armor.
Claw Initiate (Ex): As the Druid of the North Claw attains new
levels of experience, he receives titles bestowed upon him by the
Order of the North Claw. First and foremost, he progresses as an
Initiate, and his learning is guided fairly closely; while he is
allowed autonomy and can find his own way in life, at least once a
week a more senior member of the order does what he can to find the
Initiate and assess his progress.
This assessment is often done in conversation over dinner -
the Order trusts its members unless there is a legitimate complaint.
The Druid of the North Claw, during these interviews, learns of new
ways to apply his knowledge, and of the potential fruits of his study.
The Druid of the North Claw, at 1st level, gains a competence
bonus to Survival and Handle animal checks equal to his class level,
as these periodic discussions help expand his knowledge.
Spells: The Druids of the North Claw gain the ability to
commune with spirits. These foundling relationships allow the Druid to
call upon services a few times a day. These spirits assist the Druid
as best they can; so the Druids of the North Claw weave their magics.
A Druid of the North Claw casts divine spells, which are drawn
from the Druid of the North Claw spell list. He can cast any spell he
knows without preparing it ahead of time. To learn or cast a spell, a
Druid of the North Claw must have a Wisdom score equal to at least 10
+ the spell's level. The Difficulty Class for a saving throw against a
Druid of the North Claw's spell is 10 + the spell level + the Druid of
the North Claw's Wisdom modifier.
Like other spellcasters, a Druid of the North Claw can cast
only a certain number of spells of each spell level per day. His base
daily spell allotment is given on Table: The Druid of the North Claw.
In addition, he receives bonus spells per day if he has a high Wisdom
score.
The Druid of the North Claw's selection of spells is extremely
limited. A Druid of the North Claw of first level knows two 1st-level
spells of your choice. At each new Druid of the North Claw level, he
gains one or more new spells, as indicated on Table: Druid of the
North Claw Spells Known. (Unlike spells per day, the number of spells
a Druid of the North Claw knows is not affected by his Wisdom score;
the numbers on Table: Druid of the North Claw Spells Known are fixed.)
As noted above, a Druid of the North Claw need not prepare his
spells in advance. He can cast any spell he knows at any time,
assuming he has not yet used up his allotment of spells per day for
the spell's level.
A Druid of the North claw normally cannot cast his spells
while Wild Shaped or using his Sign of the Claw ability (Until he
gains the Mark of the Claw ability, see below).
Sign of the Claw (Su): The next step in the Druid of the North
Claw's studies explore his fledgling connection to the spirits of
nature. A Druid of the North Claw who has dedicated himself to the
path of the Claw gains the ability to take on the form of the Claw -
taking on the physical form of the Order's totemic creature, the bear.
This is not, however, an immediate process; the Sign of the Claw
improves as the Druid grows in the order.
Starting at 2nd level, the Druid of the North Claw gains the
ability to Wild Shape (as the Druid ability) into the form of a Bear
as a standard action once a day. Initially, this bear form grants the
Druid of the North Claw +8 Strength, +2 Dex, and +4 Constitution,
lowlight vision, the scent special ability, +2 natural armour, 2 claw
attacks that deal 1d4 slashing damage, and a bite attack that deals
1d6 slashing damage. The Druid can only maintain this form for a
number of rounds equal to the Druid's class level plus his Wisdom
modifier. This Bear form is Medium-sized, and has a movement speed of
40 feet.
At 6th level, the Druid of the North Claw's bear form
improves, showing the Druid's greater prowess and attenuation to the
spirit of the Bear, and he can change form twice a day. From 6th level
onward, his bear form grants him +16 Strength, +2 Dex, and +8
Constitution, low-light vision, the scent special ability, the
improved grab special attack, +5 natural armour, 2 claw attacks that
deal 1d8 slashing damage, and a bite attack that deals 2d6 slashing
damage. The Bear form is now Large, and has a movement speed of 40
feet.
By 10th level, the Druid of the North Claw's bear form has
become a true image of the Bear Totem. His bear form grants him +20
Strength, +2 Dex, and +8 Constitution, low-light vision, the scent
special ability, the improved grab special attack, +7 natural armour,
2 claw attacks that deal 2d4 slashing damage, and a bite attack that
deals 2d8 slashing damage. The Bear form is still Large, and has a
movement speed of 40 feet.
The Druid of the North Claw who has attained the Sign of the
Claw develops a physical mark on his skin that shows the level of
ability he has attained. Initially, as an Initiate, the Druid of the
North Claw's mark is of the symbol of the Order, outlined in black on
the Druid's skin. When the Druid attains the rank of Adept, this mark
becomes outlined in red and orange. Once the Druid attains the rank of
Master, the mark is no longer fixed in its colouration, and instead
shimmers with opalescent light.
Scent (Ex): Some aspects of the Druid of the North Claw's
talents are brought to bear thanks to the druid's connection to the
spiritual. However, some of them are entirely more mundane; thanks to
their development as a creature of two forms, their bodies have begun
to blend - the Druid's body begins to take on some traits of his bear
totem.
At 4th level, the Druid of the North Claw gains the Scent
special ability.
Claw Adept (Su): The Druid of the North Claw becomes more
autonomous and less monitored with the more experience he gains. At a
certain point in his training, his senior acknowledges that he has
become an Adept - no longer an Initiate - and can determine his own
fate. Furthermore, his attunement with the Totem of the North Claw
begins to blossom on the Druid's body. He gains a secondary mark, in
the sign of a star, which grants him the gift of rejuvenation.
At 5th level, the Druid of the North Claw gains Fast Healing
2. The Druid, as an Adept, is now granted new rights and
responsibilities. At times, the Druid of the North Claw may be called
upon to guide an Initiate.
Mark of the Claw (Ex): As the Druid's training nears its peak,
he attains greater levels of spiritual attunement; no longer do the
spirits that grant him spells require conventional components - his
casting is no longer the product of ritual. The magic that flows
through everything flows through him - and he can direct it as a
thought.
At 8th level, the Druid receives the Mark of the Claw, a
second mark to compliment his Sign of the Claw; this mark glows and
flares with magic. The Druid of the North Claw can now cast spells in
his Bear form.
Claw Master (Ex): The Druid of the North Claw who has attained
the rank of Master is a bastion of spiritual power and has a great
understanding of the nature of his Totem. He has passed a point where
training is no longer effective and instead, he forges his own path as
a Druid of the North Claw. He is no longer the student - he is now the
tutor.
At 9th level, the Druid of the North Claw attains the rank of
Master, and is no longer considered a student. He also no longer has a
limitation on how long he can remain in his Bear form, or on how often
he can change between his forms.

Druid of the North Claw Spell List
Druids of the North Claw select their spells known from the following
list.
1st-level - Animal Messenger, Calm Animals, Charm Animal,
Entangle, Jump, Longstrider, Magic Fang, Pass Without Trace, Speak
With Animals, Summon Nature's Ally I.
2nd-level - Barkskin, Bear's Endurance, Cure Light Wounds,
Protection From Energy, Snare, Speak With Plants, Spike Growth, Summon
Nature's Ally II.
3rd-level - Command Plants, Cure Moderate Wounds, Greater
Magic Fang, Plant Growth, Summon Nature's Ally III, Tree Shape.
4th-level - Animal Growth, Commune With Nature, Cure Serious
Wounds, Freedom of Movement, Mass Bear's Endurance, Nondetection,
Summon Nature's Ally IV, Tree Stride.

Table: The Druid of the North Claw
Level Special Spells Per Day
1 2 3 4
1st Claw Initiate 1
2nd Sign of the Claw I 2
3rd 2 1
4th Scent 2 2
5th Claw Adept 2 2 1
6th Sign of the Claw II 2 2 2
7th 3 2 2 1
8th Mark of the Claw 3 2 2 2
9th Claw Master 3 3 2 2
10th Sign of the Claw III 3 3 3 2

More about : prestige class review

Anonymous
February 25, 2005 4:06:34 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Talen wrote:
> Druid of the North Claw
> Prestige Class
<snippage>

What I took from this is that they don't continue to advance in
spellcasting, but actually start over casting divine spells as a
sorcerer, more or less, yes? hmm.

I don't know if the uber-shapechange is worth that. It basically makes
then a beefy fighter with some low level divine spells that they can't
cast while fighting (because odds are they'll be shapeshifting). If i
get you right they can cast them eventually, but that seems like a long
time to wait just to use class abilities.

Other than that it seems interesting. I just don't know how I feel
about the magic. It seems like a druid order shouldn't just stop
progressing, magically. it doesn't make sense. it would make more
sense if they continued to advance as a druid (or maybe half druid) but
gained the ability to cast specific spells (or a specific number)
spontaneously. So when they gain a level they cast as a druid of their
new level (or their old level + 1/2 their PrC level if you like) but
can also pick two first level spells that they cast spontaneously (and
so on ad nauseum).
Anonymous
February 25, 2005 4:06:34 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Shadow Wolf wrote:

> I think what you missed is that this Prestige class is not intended
for
> Druids:
>
> >> Most commonly, Rangers and some Barbarians become Druids of
> >> the Claw.
>
> It's *intended* to be a "beefy fighter with some low level divine
> spells".

You're right. The druids bit threw me off way far. If that's the case
I like it just fine.
Related resources
Anonymous
February 25, 2005 4:26:05 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

"Anivair" <anivair@gmail.com> wrote in news:1109342058.350380.243550
@f14g2000cwb.googlegroups.com:

>
> Talen wrote:
>> Druid of the North Claw
>> Prestige Class
> <snippage>
>
> What I took from this is that they don't continue to advance in
> spellcasting, but actually start over casting divine spells as a
> sorcerer, more or less, yes? hmm.
>
> I don't know if the uber-shapechange is worth that. It basically makes
> then a beefy fighter with some low level divine spells that they can't
> cast while fighting (because odds are they'll be shapeshifting). If i
> get you right they can cast them eventually, but that seems like a long
> time to wait just to use class abilities.
>
> Other than that it seems interesting. I just don't know how I feel
> about the magic. It seems like a druid order shouldn't just stop
> progressing, magically. it doesn't make sense. it would make more
> sense if they continued to advance as a druid (or maybe half druid) but
> gained the ability to cast specific spells (or a specific number)
> spontaneously. So when they gain a level they cast as a druid of their
> new level (or their old level + 1/2 their PrC level if you like) but
> can also pick two first level spells that they cast spontaneously (and
> so on ad nauseum).
>

I think what you missed is that this Prestige class is not intended for
Druids:

>> Most commonly, Rangers and some Barbarians become Druids of
>> the Claw.

It's *intended* to be a "beefy fighter with some low level divine
spells".

--
Shadow Wolf
shadowolf3400 at yahoo dot com
Stories at http://www.asstr.org/~Shadow_Wolf
AIF at http://www.geocities.com/shadowolf3400

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Anonymous
February 26, 2005 2:35:10 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Talen <talen@dodo.com.au> wrote:
>Druid of the North Claw
>Prestige Class
>
> Prerequisites
> To qualify as a Druid of the North Claw, a character must
>fulfill the following criteria.
> Knowledge (Nature): 5 ranks.
> Survival: 5 ranks.
> Alignment: Lawful Neutral, Lawful Good, or Neutral Good.
> Feats: Animal Affinity, Endurance.
> Special: The prospective Druid of the North Claw must have met
>with and been accepted by another Druid of the North Claw of at least
>an Adept rank.

A prestige class you could take at 3rd level? IMO the prerequisites
are way too lax.

Also, have you looked at the Bear Warrior, from Complete Warrior?

Donald
Anonymous
February 26, 2005 2:39:44 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

It has been brought to my attention that "Anivair" <anivair@gmail.com>
wrote:

>
>Talen wrote:
>> Druid of the North Claw
>> Prestige Class
><snippage>
>
>What I took from this is that they don't continue to advance in
>spellcasting, but actually start over casting divine spells as a
>sorcerer, more or less, yes? hmm.

Barring for the fact that the class doesn't require divine
spellcasting ability, yes; if a hardcore druid takes this class, it's
a step down. For a ranger, however...

>I don't know if the uber-shapechange is worth that. It basically makes
>then a beefy fighter with some low level divine spells that they can't
>cast while fighting (because odds are they'll be shapeshifting). If i
>get you right they can cast them eventually, but that seems like a long
>time to wait just to use class abilities.
>
>Other than that it seems interesting. I just don't know how I feel
>about the magic. It seems like a druid order shouldn't just stop
>progressing, magically. it doesn't make sense. it would make more
>sense if they continued to advance as a druid (or maybe half druid) but
>gained the ability to cast specific spells (or a specific number)
>spontaneously. So when they gain a level they cast as a druid of their
>new level (or their old level + 1/2 their PrC level if you like) but
>can also pick two first level spells that they cast spontaneously (and
>so on ad nauseum).

This class was written as an attempt at ensuring everything had a
paragraph of /sensible/ flavour text before I tackled the mechanic way
that flavour was expressed. It was /extremely/ hard to write, and in
the process, sometimes the flavour shaped the mechanics (such as how I
described the spellcasting led to them being spontaneous,
shugenja-style spellcasters).
Anonymous
February 26, 2005 2:52:26 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

It has been brought to my attention that tsang@soda.csua.berkeley.edu
(Donald Tsang) wrote:

>Talen <talen@dodo.com.au> wrote:
>>Druid of the North Claw
>>Prestige Class
>>
>> Prerequisites
>> To qualify as a Druid of the North Claw, a character must
>>fulfill the following criteria.
>> Knowledge (Nature): 5 ranks.
>> Survival: 5 ranks.
>> Alignment: Lawful Neutral, Lawful Good, or Neutral Good.
>> Feats: Animal Affinity, Endurance.
>> Special: The prospective Druid of the North Claw must have met
>>with and been accepted by another Druid of the North Claw of at least
>>an Adept rank.
>
>A prestige class you could take at 3rd level? IMO the prerequisites
>are way too lax.

Hm. This is true, I concur - I hadn't actually realised the required
ranks in skills were so low.

>Also, have you looked at the Bear Warrior, from Complete Warrior?

Yes. A far more militant variety.
February 26, 2005 2:52:27 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

"Talen" <talen@spamspamspamspam.dodo.com.au> wrote in message
news:mgev1198a8t6hqsqmvnof49bl2ldeeu8hl@4ax.com...
> It has been brought to my attention that tsang@soda.csua.berkeley.edu
> (Donald Tsang) wrote:
>
>>Talen <talen@dodo.com.au> wrote:
>>>Druid of the North Claw
>>>Prestige Class
>>>
>>> Prerequisites
>>> To qualify as a Druid of the North Claw, a character must
>>>fulfill the following criteria.
>>> Knowledge (Nature): 5 ranks.
>>> Survival: 5 ranks.
>>> Alignment: Lawful Neutral, Lawful Good, or Neutral Good.
>>> Feats: Animal Affinity, Endurance.
>>> Special: The prospective Druid of the North Claw must have met
>>>with and been accepted by another Druid of the North Claw of at least
>>>an Adept rank.
>>
>>A prestige class you could take at 3rd level? IMO the prerequisites
>>are way too lax.
>
> Hm. This is true, I concur - I hadn't actually realised the required
> ranks in skills were so low.

I was looking at the same point, except that it is actually a prestige class
that you can take at level 2 for humans with the bonus feat. What about
just adding a Base Attack requirement of +5 or +6?

I think that I would review the alignment restrictions. I think of
shapeshifting as an inherantly Chaotic act. In addition, of the classes
that you see wanting to take this PrC, only Ranger has access to all three
alignments. Barbarians cannot be lawful. Druids cannot be LG.

Expecting others to disagree, but that's my $0.02.

David

--
CaissaWas__SPAMHater__INTP@adelphia__ANTIV__.net without the block
Anonymous
February 27, 2005 1:33:55 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.frp.dnd (More info?)

Keith Davies wrote:
>
> Nik's told me about in his campaign, many of the low-magic
> prestige classes (such as Assassin) have been revised so
> that you either gain one caster level in the prestige class,
> or 1/2 level in a spellcasting class you have levels in.
>
> So, your Wiz8/Assassin6 could cast as either Wiz8/Assassin6,
> or Wiz11 (player's choice).

Suggested only, so far. The players and I haven't even discussed it
yet, and I haven't gone anywhere near playtesting it.

--
Nik
- remove vermin from email address to reply.
!