Ashborn (3.5e Class)
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Making an Ashborn
Most Ashborn have impressive strength that belies their frail, fragile appearance; commonly wielding weapons that can decay an opponent upon touch in order to coincide with many of the Ashborn's own abilities. Another frequent battle tactic is the use of powers and items which can incapacitate a target long enough to go in for a kill.
Races: Ashborn can be of any race; although, in Afterworld campaigns they are usually Edesil or Ør'rmol Alyvar. In other campaigns, many drow, vampires and half-orcs become Ashborn.
Alignment: Most Ashborn are chaotic, however they can be of any alignment.
Starting Gold: 3d8×10 gp.
Starting Age: Moderate.
|1st||+1||+0||+2||+0||Oath of the Ashborn, Rime Eyes, Entropic Strike +1d6|
|3rd||+3||+1||+3||+1||Entropic Strike +2d6|
|5th||+5||+1||+4||+1||Aura of Plague, Necrotic Being|
|6th||+6/+1||+2||+5||+2||Entropic Strike +3d6|
|7th||+7/+2||+2||+5||+2||Dry Body, Sweet Breath|
|9th||+9/+4||+3||+6||+3||Entropic Strike +4d6|
|10th||+10/+5||+3||+7||+3||Aura of Cinders, Chilling Glare|
|12th||+12/+7/+2||+4||+8||+4||Entropic Strike +5d6|
|14th||+14/+9/+4||+4||+9||+4||Gaze of Decay, Disease-ridden Breath|
|15th||+15/+10/+5||+5||+9||+5||Entropic Strike +6d6|
|16th||+16/+11/+6/+1||+5||+10||+5||Flesh to Ashes|
|18th||+18/+13/+8/+3||+6||+11||+6||Entropic Strike +7d6|
|20th||+20/+15/+10/+5||+6||+12||+6||Purifying Burn, Smoldering Heart|
Class Skills (10 + Int modifier per level, ×4 at 1st level)
All of the following are class features of the Ashborn.
Weapon and Armor Proficiency: Ashborn are proficient with light and medium armor and shields, except the tower shield. They are also proficient with all simple and martial weapons, along with the shuriken.
Oath of the Ashborn: An Ashborn takes an oath to gain his massive prowess; this can be something as simple as commitment to hating gumballs to something as complex as never deviating from a true neutral alignment while simultaneously being a merciless killer and owner of an orphanage. He cannot break this oath and remain an Ashborn(See Below). While he keeps this oath, he gains a +2 competence bonus to Intimidate and Sense Motive rolls.
Rime Eyes: Upon becoming an Ashborn, a character's eyes become extremely strange. Other than the change in appearance, they gain darkvision and low-light vision up to 30 ft. If they already have one or both of these, it increases by 30 ft.
Entropic Strike (Ex): An Ashborn relies on his understanding of life, death and decay to deal extra damage in battle. At first level he may add +1d6 points of damage to any attack as many times per day equal to his Constitution modifier, this increases to +2d6 at level 3 and then increases by 1d6 every three levels afterward. (+2d6 at 3rd, +3d6 at 6th, +4d6 at 9th, etc.) He may apply this to all melee, ranged, and magical attacks.
Ashen Breath (Sp): At second level, an Ashborn learns how to use a horrid plume of ash to ruin an opponent's will. 3+ his int modifier per day, he may make an intimidate check on an opponent in an adjacent square; that opponent must make a will save, DC 10+the Ashborn's intimidate roll, or become paralyzed for one round and then frightened for 1d4 rounds afterward. If the target makes their save, they still become shaken for 1d4 rounds.
Reaving Claws (Ex): At fourth level, an Ashborn has begun to experience more drastic changes to his body. Bone-like talons grow on the ends of his fingertips and knuckles, allowing him to deal 1d6 lethal damage with his unarmed strikes. If the Ashborn already has natural weapons, he may instead choose to take a bonus feats for this level or replace his preexisting natural weapons.
Aura of Plague (Su): At fifth level, the air around an Ashborn seems to be tinted with his decaying presence. He gains +4 on all intimidate checks and can choose to sicken one target per day for 1 round per Ashborn level+ his con mod with a touch attack roll.
Necrotic Being (Su): At fifth level, once per day, an Ashborn may summon a maximum number of Beings equal to 1+ his int modifier; although, he may choose to summon fewer if so desired, even though this does still deplete the uses of this ability for the day. This Being is an invisible, mindless force that only its master is able to see which can perform simple tasks at the Ashborn's command. It can run and fetch objects/items, open unstuck doors, and hold chairs; as well as clean and mend. The Being can perform only one activity at a time, but it repeats the same activity over and over again if told to do so as long as the Ashborn remain within range. It can open only normal doors, drawers, lids, and the like; any hidden doors/locks are not within the Being's capability to open. With an effective Strength score of 5, it can only lift 50 pounds or drag 100 pounds; further, it can trigger traps and such, but can exert only 25 pounds of force, which is not enough to activate certain pressure plates. It can't perform any task that requires a skill check with a DC higher than 10 or that requires a check using a skill that can't be used untrained. This Being cannot fly, climb, or even swim (though it can walk on water); and its base land speed is 25ft.
This Being cannot attack in any way, and is therefore never allowed an attack roll. It cannot be killed but dissipates if it takes 6 points of damage from area attacks, or if it is unintentionally in the way of an attack target; additionally, it gets no saves against attacks or abilities.
Dry Body (Ex): At seventh level, the changes to an Ashborn's body become even more strange. It becomes necessary for him to only eat and drink once per week; after this period, he begins to feel the effects of hunger (and eventually starvation) as normal. Furthermore, he also gains +10 to saving rolls against poison.
Sweet Breath (Sp): At seventh level, an Ashborn learns to soften an opponent's ferocity through breath of uncanny allure. 3+ his int modifier times per day, he may make an intimidate check on an opponent in an adjacent square. That opponent must make a will save, DC 10+the Ashborn's intimidate roll, or become paralyzed for one round and then fascinated for 1d4 rounds afterward. If the target makes their save, they still become stunned for 1d4 rounds.
Burn-Out (Sp): At eighth level, an Ashborn learns to manipulate and amplify the heat in the air to such a degree that things around him combust into clouds of cinder. 2+ his int mod times per day, he can deal 1d6 damage to himself and in turn deal 5d6 points of fire damage to everything within a 20ft. radius of himself; this includes allies and Necrotic Beings. All his items, equipment, weapons, and other possessions are protected from this outburst.
Smoke-Out (Sp): At eighth level, an Ashborn learns how to make the air combust into thick ash clouds. 2+ his int mod times per day, he can create a magical smoke cloud covering everything within 40ft. of himself which is immune to both magical and non-magical vision, but can be blown away with any wind above 11mph. All creatures, including allies, within this cloud cannot see or hear except for the Ashborn.
Aura of Cinders (Su): At tenth level, an Ashborn can distort the air around him by filling it with decaying energy. He can use this ability 1+ his con modifier times per day, lasting the same number of rounds. For that duration, he gains cold and fire resistance 15, +10 on all intimidate checks and can also light people on fire by using his Ashen Breath class feature. He also gains two extra uses of his Ashen Breath class feature during the time he is using Aura of Cinders.
Chilling Glare (Su): At tenth level, the Ashborn can make an intimidate roll against a target within a 20ft. radius; this may only be used 3 times per day. If the target fails, the Ashborn reduces the target's Intelligence and Charisma scores to 1. The affected creature is unable to use Intelligence or Charisma-based skills, cast spells, understand language, or communicate coherently. Still, it knows who its friends are and can follow them and even protect them. The subject remains in this state until a heal, limited wish, wish, or miracle spell is used to cancel the effect of the glare. A creature that can cast arcane spells, such as a sorcerer or a wizard, takes a -4 penalty on its saving throw.
Rusting Touch (Ex): At eleventh level, an Ashborn learns to wear away at metal using his Entropic Strike. When sundering an opponents weapon, he gains a boost to the roll equal to the number of d6 he has on his Entropic Strike class feature while using said class feature. He may also make two separate touch attacks to cause an opponent to loose their armor, shield or natural armor bonus to their AC. Armors or shields looted from an opponent who has had this attack made of him is considered damaged and unwearable.
Blazing Glare (Su): At thirteenth level, an Ashborn's eyes undergo another mutation in which he learns how to project magical flames from his eyes. 2+ his con modifier times per day, he can send a 50ft. cone of Hellfire from each eye, which deals a number of d6 equal to his int modifier to everything within the cone. This fire is made of Hellfire and therefore bypasses all fire resistance/immunity. Its DC is 10+ the Ashborn's HD+his int modifier. If the targets make their reflex save, they still take half damage.
Gaze of Decay (Su): At fourteenth level, an Ashborn learns how to utilize a more decaying and destabilizing power from his eyes. He can now use his Rusting Touch ability to make three ranged touch attacks; if all attacks are successful, the Ashborn removes one of the bonuses to a target's AC (at the DM's discretion. Only a limited wish, wish, or miracle spell may restore this bonus to AC.
Disease-ridden Breath (Sp): At fifteenth level, an Ashborn learns to sicken an opponent with his deathly breath. 3+ his int modifier per day, he may make an intimidate check on an opponent in an adjacent square. That opponent must make a will save, DC 10+the Ashborn's intimidate roll, or become paralyzed for one round and then nauseated for 1d4 rounds afterward. If the target makes their save, they still become sickened for 1d4 rounds.
Flesh to Ashes (Ex): At sixteenth level, an Ashborn can speed up the decay in opponent's bodies and turn them to ash 5 times per day. If an opponent fails a will save of 8+ the Ashborn's int modifier, then they are turned to ash(Items are worn but not destroyed). This effect is completely negated if they make their saving throw. If failed, the Ashborn cannot try to use this ability until the next day.
Ageless Body (Ex): At seventeenth level, an Ashborn learns to stop the decay of his own body, but can only keep this as long as he keeps his oath. All effects of aging are stopped, however the Ashborn doesn't get any younger; he stays the same age, with the same penalties and bonuses as beforehand.
Arsonist's Desire: At nineteenth level, an Ashborn figures out how to use his love of flames and burning objects to fuel his fighting style. When something in the area is burning, he receives a +2 bonus to all rolls. If he is fighting an enemy who is on fire, then he instead receives a +4 bonus on his attack rolls. If the fire is put out, he receives a +5 bonus on his next attack roll, due to his anger at not having a fire. He also gains a +8 roll when starting a fire.
Purifying Burn: At twentieth level, an Ashborn figures out how to use his Burn-out feature in a new, different way. Instead of dealing damage to himself, he heals all status conditions and gains a number of hit points equal to his int modifier +10. He also deals extra damage in his Burn-out attack. He deals a number of d6 equal to 3+ his int modifier of Hellfire damage to each opponent within 20ft. Hellfire damage bypasses all fire resistance and immunity.
Smoldering Heart (Ex): At twentieth level, an Ashborn becomes so filled with hatred for those who go against his principals that he gains damage reduction 15/Mithral, and gains a +4 on attack rolls and damage rolls. He also chooses four skills, and he gains a +10 competency bonus on those skill rolls.
If an Ashborn breaks his oath, he loses all Ashborn Class Features and Abilities, and can no-longer progress in the Ashborn class. He can, however, re-devote himself to his Ideals and rights. If he re-takes his oath and pays 200 Experience/Hit Die, he regains all abilities he had, and can progress as an Ashborn again.
|21st||Entropic Strike +8d6|
|24th||Entropic Strike +9d6|
|27th||Entropic Strike +10d6|
|30th||Entropic Strike +11d6|
6 + Int modifier skill points per level.
Entropic Strike: This progresses the same as the normal Ashborn's Entropic Strike, adding +1d6 every three levels. (+8d6 at 21st, +9d6 at 24th, etc.)
Bonus Feats: The epic Ashborn gains a bonus feat (selected from the list of epic Ashborn bonus feats) every three levels after 19th.
Epic Ashborn Bonus Feat List: Armor Skin, Closed Mind, Controlled Immolation, Damage Reduction, Energy Resistance, Epic Fortitude, Epic Prowess, Epic Reflexes, Epic Reputation, Epic Skill Focus, Epic Toughness, Epic Will, Extended Life Span, Fast Healing, Improved Natural Attack, Penetrate Damage Redution, Perfect Health, Polyglot, Residual Rebound, Superior Initiative.
Half-Elf Ashborn Starting Package
Armor: None (speed 30ft.)
Skill Selection: Pick a number of skills equal to 6 + Int modifier.
Feat: Combat Reflexes
Gold: 140 gp
Playing an Ashborn
Religion: Most Ashborn hold to an ideal rather than a deity; it is commonly believed among the Ashborn that one's own sense of morality and truth takes priority over that of any other. However, if one were to seek out the guidance of another and devote themselves to worship, they will most likely choose gods of decay, fire, or death in accordance with his/her lifestyle and perspective on which aspects of life (and death) deserve praise.
Other Classes: Despite their reclusive, lonely nature, members of this class often get along well with any class who must dedicate themselves to their work in order to learn and succeed. Ashborn understand and respect the need for rogues and rangers to diligently train their skills in order to perfect themselves. Ashborn like wizards and sorcerers, as they must study and work at their magic with a deep struggle of the mind. They know much about hand to hand combat, and get along well with fighters and barbarians because of this; although such classes will frequently look down upon the frail-looking Ashborn unless his/her skill in battle is demonstrated clearly. While friendly to most,they do not like paladins and clerics who hold blindly to their gods without first searching themselves for answers and guidance.
Combat: Ashborn typically occupy either the front-lines or immediate backup in combat, utilizing merciless abilities in order to eliminate or incapacitate targets. While in a party, it is quite common to see an Ashborn distancing himself from allies in order to protect them from his/her more reckless abilities.
Advancement: Most Ashborn are content with the powers their oath grants them; however some will multiclass in barbarian in order to augment their intimidation as well as devastating melee capabilities, and/or fighter for the purpose of diversifying or perfecting battle strategies. More adventurous Ashborn may even go into a psionic or spellcasting classes as a means of exploring elemental tactics; though this is very rare due to Ashborn skills and abilities being minimally compatible with such classes.
Ashborn in the World
|“||While a barbarian's passion may sunder mountains, or a bard's song may quell the rage of nations, all must waste away to ash and dust when it's time has reached an end. And that, I'm afraid, is why we exist; to herald the end, to decay and immolate that which has lived long enough. Even if our purpose leaves us in solitude when all is said and done.||”|
|—Zoltan Shivoz, Half-Dragon Ashborn|
Wherever there is an Ashborn, tension and uneasiness are sure to follow. Reserved, introverted creatures with unsettling appearances, the Ashborn are as friendly as they are mistrusted by nearly all other groups; and while some wear this social condition as a badge of fearful respect, others feel ostracized because of it. Contrary to the unfairly lateral tales told about these individuals, very few Ashborn are like their comrades as a result of varied reasons for taking the oath as well as the very ideals which fill the words of their own, distinct oaths themselves. Indeed, it would seem that the only uniting factors between Ashborn are their affinity for decay, and passion for what they each hold dear.
Daily Life: Most Ashborn either travel with highly trusted parties of relatively low numbers, or alone; though they only stay in one place if it has the solitude or serenity they crave. Others will feed their eagerness to usher in death by enhancing the decay they find in the world around them, either on the scale of euthanizing a venerable crone, or toppling an entire forest. Very few Ashborn go too long without an incredibly eventful day, particularly in the presence of overwhelmingly vital, thriving places/creatures.
Notables: Tarvalrøt Shrád'Avnamil, a spurned male Drow Ashborn, led full armies of fire and ash elementals to victory against numerous houses of prominent drow dynasties only to be overpowered before he could dismantle a house which would irrevocably seal his dominance.
Lae Bernard, a female Half-Elf Ashborn, burned down the elven capitol because they would not permit her entry due to her corrupted appearance; an action which resulted in the highest death toll that city had ever witnessed.
Macht of Blades, a male Minotaur/Lizardfolk hybrid Ashborn, served loyally as the primary guardian to one of the most powerful and benevolent kingdoms to ever reign in a world lost in time; his might was not only known throughout that land, but also resonated so clearly that even the strongest of dragons respected his word as law within the confines of his king's territory.
Organizations: Ashborn are mostly solitary, preferring to decay the world around them rather than forge connections and relationships. They may join military efforts or wandering parties of adventures, but only if such expeditions appeal to either their destructive urges or if their ideals guide them toward a goal shared by the aforementioned groups.
NPC Reactions: A majority of common NPC's regard Ashborn with suspicion or disgust; normally viewing them as nothing more than twisted agents of plague and evil gods. Some NPC's may act favorably if they are evil or dark due to Ashborn baring a sinister stigma; however, evil characters will be quite hostile if it is discovered that an encountered Ashborn is, in fact, not evil as well. Even if the Ashborn has a reputation for good deeds and benevolence, many commonfolk will continue to be reluctant in showing them kindness for fear of deceit or their menacing countenance.
Social behaviors are quite easy to gather about many of these fascinating wanderers, although few have dared to get to know an Ashborn more personally; thereby making details of their existence hard to come by. Characters with ranks in Knowledge (arcana) can research Ashborn to learn more about them. When a character makes a skill check, read or paraphrase the following, including information from lower DCs.
|5||Most Ashborn prefer solitude rather than the luxury of company.|
|10||Their frailty is a ruse; Ashborn are often stronger than physique would have you believe.|
|15||An Ashborn's power derives from the personalized oath they take upon joining their ranks; this oath can contain anything the individual desires.|
|20||If an Ashborn freely abandons his/her oath, all abilities they gained during their time as an agent of decay would vanish until such a time as they choose to once again uphold that same ideal.|
Ashborn in the Game
As wanderers, outcasts, and occasional doom-bringers, Ashborn NPCs may often be found as randomly encountered enemies if players are aggressive or disrespectful upon meeting one, more adjusted Ashborn may work in towns/villages as tenders of a forge, or some of the more corrupt and powerful could go so far as to gather armies of evil creatures to do their bidding; this is all at the discretion of the DM, as this class is claimed by a wide variety of PCs and NPCs with numerous different personality traits. As PCs, the same goes; Ashborn are a diverse group which leans toward solitary, corrosive behavior and brash battle tactics, although a few brave souls seek to reinvent the implied destiny of the Oath.
Sample Encounter: The PCs meander through a quiet, seemingly abandoned village overgrown by vegetation and wildlife -potentially on their way to complete a separate task- when they come across a pale, shriveled, motionless body propped against a nearby wall. Upon inspection, there appears to be no sign of injury; simply rot and decay. They are then descended upon by a black-eyed man wielding a scythe who identifies himself by saying "let's get the pleasantries out of the way; I'm Geruul, and you're intruding on my ambush spot." At this point, the players may be given the option to join Geruul in his ambush, or attack him.
Regardless of the decision, the DM may have Geruul's target arrive after a few minutes to either join the battle between him and the PCs, or become the victim of their combined effort. The details of said target are up to the DM's discretion; it may be as simple as a roaming beast, to as lethal as a high-bounty murderer. If the players choose to join his ambush, however, it is not suggested that Geruul join the party afterward, as this conflicts with both his personality as well the typical Ashborn lifestyle.
EL 17: Geruul Ra'tesh is a devoted bounty hunter with a troubled past, yet an unshakable charisma about him; albeit just as unsettling as it is alluring. A strategist at heart, he is not afraid to unleash viciousness and brutality when necessary; although, very few have ever gotten close enough to him in order to see past his facades.