Dragoon (by RDC) (3.5e Prestige Class)
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|“||Because of the good in his heart, the dragons chose him to be the first. Because of my heart, he chose me. Because of what I see in you, I have decided to train you in the ways of the almighty dragons.||”|
|—Tahlk Syndres, Human Dragoon. (Second ever dragoon, talking to his first student-to-be).|
Dragoons are usually very skilled at fighting large creatures, such as dragons and giants, and are therefore very useful in protecting villages that commonly are attacked by such monsters. Dragoons are often very protective of their fellow villagers.
Becoming a Dragoon
Dragoons need high constitution and high strength in order to battle well, as well as high dexterity to make up for their lack of armor and shields. Because of this, dragoons usually start as fighters, paladins, or barbarians.
|Base Attack Bonus:||+8.|
|Skills:||Jump 6 ranks.|
|Feats:|| 3 or more of the following:|
(For the above feats, “Long Spear” can be replaced with “Ranseur”, “Guisarme”, “Glaive”, or any weapon of the same style of fighting).
|Special:||Must have at one point previously encountered a dragon (of any size and type) and survived.|
|1st||+1||+2||+2||+0||Affinity, Giant Target, Improved Jumping, Jump Charge|
|3rd||+3||+3||+3||+1||High Jump, Spear Grand Mastery|
Class Skills (2 + Int modifier per level)
|14th||Dragon Heart 3/day|
|19th||Dragon Heart 4/day, [Bonus Feat]|
All of the following are class features of the dragoon.
Affinity (Su): In their basic training, dragoons learn their elemental affinity. A dragoon has an affinity for either acid, cold, electricity, or fire energy. A dragoon has energy resistance to the specified energy type equal to his dragoon class level.
Giant Target (Ex): Dragoons are trained to battle monsters that are larger than them, and therefore have an advantage fighting them. A dragoon’s critical threat range with his weapon is increased by 1 for every size category larger than him his target is. (A medium dragoon with a threat range of (20/x2) against a Large enemy has a threat range of (19-20/x2); against a Huge enemy, he has a threat range of (18-20/x2), etc.). This bonus stacks with other abilities that increase threat range, but does not double with the "Improved Critical" feat, or any other feat that multiplies the threat range.
Because of their training against larger creatures, dragoons are not used to fighting smaller creatures. For every size category the target is smaller than the dragoon, the dragoon takes a -2 penalty to attack rolls.
Improved Jumping (Ex): Dragoons are trained to jump well so that they can reach larger creatures, and can therefore jump more effectively than almost any other person. A dragoon takes no armor penalties to his jump checks, and he can jump from being stationary as well as he can jump with a running start.
Also, a dragoon can jump faster than a normal person. A dragoon's land speed is treated as double his normal land speed while jumping for purposes of jump check bonuses and how far he can jump per turn.
Jump Charge (Ex): A trained dragoon can use his jumping abilities for offensive purposes, using the momentum to his advantage. If the dragoon performs a charge attack, he can attempt to jump the entire distance between himself and his target instead of running. If he succeeds in jumping the distance, the dragoon gains a +4 bonus to the attack roll and the damage roll of the attack he makes at the end of the charge, but he takes a -2 penalty to AC for the next round. If the dragoon does not reach his target with his jump check, he must succeed a DC 15 balance check or trip and fall prone. Even if he succeeds this balance check, he still takes a -2 penalty to AC for one round. [Note: The DC to jump a horizontal distance is equal to the desired distance in feet]
Lancet (Su): Dragoons are powerful in melee, but they also learn to channel life energy. Starting at 2nd level, a dragoon can absorb a target's life energy through his weapon. The dragoon can declare an attack to be a Lancet attack. If the attack hits, after the damage is dealt from the attack, the target takes an additional 1d4 damage per 2 dragoon levels (maximum 5d4 at level 10), and the dragoon is healed for an amount equal to the extra damage dealt. If the attack misses, the use is wasted. If the attack results in a critical hit, the extra damage from this attack is not multiplied with the normal attack; instead, it adds +1d4 to the damage (or +2d4 if the critical is x3, +3d4 if the critical is x4, etc.). This ability can be used a number of times in a day equal to the dragoon’s class level.
High Jump (Ex): Starting at 3rd level, the dragoon’s vertical jumps become more efficient. Any time the dragoon attempts a vertical jump, he gains a bonus to the check equal to his dragoon level x4. Also, when falling from heights that would be damaging to him, a dragoon can halve the damage taken by succeeding a Tumble check (DC 15). [Note: Normally, a DC 15 Tumble check can reduce the height by 10 feet for damage purposes]
Spear Mastery: Dragoons are specifically trained to use long spears and the like so that they can attack while remaining at a slight distance. At 3rd level, the dragoon's use with a long spear (or another weapon of the same style, mentioned above) is improved. With any long spear-like weapons he has the Weapon Focus feat for, the dragoon can use it as though it were not a reach weapon (he can still use it as a reach weapon if he chooses; he may now choose whether to use reach or not for each attack). Also, he gains a +1 bonus to all attack and damage rolls with the chosen weapon.
Dragon Heart (Su): At 4th level and higher, a dragoon can use his energy to heal his party. Once per day, the dragoon can cast Dragon Heart on everyone within 30 feet of himself (including himself, excluding anyone he chooses to exclude). Each turn this ability is active, everyone affected by it heals an amount of hit points equal to twice the dragoon’s class level. This ability remains active for an amount of turns equal to the dragoon’s constitution modifier. This ability can be cast a 2nd time in a day starting at 9th level.
xxxxx (Ex): At 5th level, a dragoon gains an ability that relates to his affinity
Dragon Breath (Su): At 7th level, a dragoon learns how to use a breath weapon, just as a dragon does. The dragoon's breath weapon deals the same type of damage as the energy type he selected for his Draconic Resistance ability.
If the energy type chosen is electricity, the breath weapon is a 60 foot line of electricity; otherwise, it is a 30 foot cone of the specified energy type. The breath weapon deals 10d8 damage, and a reflex save (DC 10 + dragoon level + Constitution modifier) halves the damage. This breath weapon can be used a number of times in a day equal to the dragoon’s constitution modifier + 1, but he must wait 1 minute (10 rounds) after using it before he can use it again.
????? (Su): At 10th level, the dragoon gains a final ability.
Epic Dragoon Bonus Feat List: Blinding Speed, Dire Charge, Epic Prowess, Epic Reflexes, Epic Skill Focus (for any of the dragoon's class skills), Epic Weapon Focus, Epic Weapon Specialization, Great Constitution, Great Dexterity, Great Strength
If a Dragoon's alignment becomes non-good, he loses his Lancet and Dragon Heart class features, and he can no longer gain levels in Dragoon. Also, any time an ex-Dragoon uses Summon Dragon, he is affected by the effects of Judgment, as though the Judgment Dragon were summoned (though no one else is affected unless it would be summoned normally). If the Dragoon becomes good again and atones for his actions (see Atonement), he can advance in levels in Dragoon again; however, he does not regain the Lancet and Dragon Heart class features until he gains at least one level in Dragoon.
Playing a Dragoon
Combat: Front Line (Tank/Damage)
Advancement: Dragoons usually start with levels in Fighter, Barbarian, or Paladin, so continuing to advance those class levels would greatly help a dragoon. Also, dragoons tend to be somewhat ranged fighters (with their reach weapons), so multiclassing into a Sorcerer- or Wizard-like class could be beneficial.
Resources: Dragoons are usually heroes of their village, and are also usually friends with other dragoons, as there are very few schools to learn the dragoon ways. Because of this, dragoons can count on their fellow villagers and fellow dragoons to help with what they can.
Dragoons in the World
|“||We shall protect our village; only after it is completely safe will we be finished. In other words, you're in this for life.||”|
|—Zetin Schist, Half-Elf Dragoon.|
Dragoons are almost always guardians of villages or royal families, or they will often be adventurers looking to help better the world on their own.
NPC Reactions: Non-evil NPCs usually respect dragoons as heroes, as they would paladins. Evil NPCs, however, tend to dislike dragoons, envious of their power within the village.
Characters with ranks in Knowledge(Heroes?) can research Dragoons to learn more about them. When a character makes a skill check, read or paraphrase the following, including information from lower DCs.
|11||Dragoons have a special talent against larger monsters.|
|16||Dragoons were once thought to be able to fly, because they jump so far.|
|21||Dragoons can summon dragons and use some magic.|
|26||Dragoons were first created by a warrior that made a pact with the Judgment Dragon. The Judgment Dragon determined through the use of Judgment that the warrior was pure of heart, and gave him special abilities, and taught him how to pass them down to others. It is said that this warrior taught his first student, who taught his first student, etc., how to actually fly with the dragons and live with them peacefully.|