Frost Knight (3.5e Class)
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The frost knight is a cold counterpart of the flare knight (the class created by Jota). Just as a flare knight utilizes the power of fire to combat his foes, the frost knight taps into the forces of winter and the dangers of ice, creating an environment that saps even the hardiest warriors of their vitality and even the most prepared explorers of their desire to wander the tundra. Distinguishable by their extremely pale complexions and reticent personalities, a frost knight embodies the ice and snow that he controls: bitter, harsh, dangerous and very, very cold.
Making a Frost Knight
A frost knight ultilizes a variety of cold-based abilities for attack, defense or other uses, for his powers are not only used for combat. Since he is not a cold creature, he excels against fire-type creatures, and his resistance to cold allows him to fight other arctic creatures on equal footing. All in all, the frost knight is an extremely balanced fighter possessing a combination of martial and psionic ability.
Races: Like their flare knight counterparts, many frost knights are human. Most of these, and the other races who become frost knights, usually hail from arctic regions where ice and snow dominate the landscape.
Alignment: Any .
Starting Gold: 2d8 ×10 gp (90 gp).
Starting Age: Simple.
|1st||+0||+2||+0||+2||Freezing Point, Cryogenesis, Frozen Soul 5|
|3rd||+2||+3||+1||+3||Frozen Soul 10, Verglas|
|4th||+3||+4||+1||+4||Aurora (Zero), Flash Freeze|
|5th||+3||+4||+1||+4||Imbue Weapon, Freezer Burn|
|7th||+5||+5||+2||+5||Frozen Soul 20|
|11th||+8/+3||+7||+3||+7||Cryoplaning +30, Frozen Soul 30, Rime Armor +1|
|12th||+9/+4||+8||+4||+8||Abominable Snowman, Frostbite|
|14th||+10/+5||+9||+4||+9||Gelid Blood, Cryoplaning +60|
|15th||+11/+6/+1||+9||+5||+9||Razorhail, Rime Armor +3|
|16th||+12/+7/+2||+10||+5||+10||Aurora (Absolute Zero)|
|17th||+13/+8/+3||+10||+5||+10||Heart of the White Wyrm, Cryoplaning +90|
|19th||+14/+9/+4||+11||+6||+11||Rime Armor +5, Ice-Nine|
Class Skills (6 + Int modifier per level, ×4 at 1st level)
Any skill with one or more asterisks is not gained (and therefore points cannot be invested in it) until the level listed after the skill in parentheses.
*A frost knight does not teleport arrows away from himself. Projectiles deflected by this skill freeze in midair and fall harmlessly to the ground before they ever reach the frost knight.
**When the frost knight does a blink teleport, he blinks into and out of reality in a cloud of swirling snow.
*** Due to the Gelid Blood class feature, a frost knight may take 5 on Life Extension checks even though the skill would normally prevent him from doing so.
****A psychic weapon created by a frost knight is composed for cold and does cold damage.
All of the following are class features of the frost knight.
Weapon and Armor Proficiency: A frost knight is automatically proficient with all simple and martial weapons, light, medium and heavy armor plate, and all shields except for tower shields.
Freezing Point (Ex): The frost knight gains the Psychic Ability feat.
Cryogenesis (Ps): A frost knight can create and launch a shard of ice in his hand as a free action. This acts just as an ice knife spell (p. 112, Complete Arcane) cast by a wu jen of the frost knight’s level.
Frozen Soul (Ex): A frost knight has cold resistance 5. This improves to 10 at level 3, 20 at level 7 and 30 at level 11. This feature is superseded by the Cryopreservation class feature.
Verglas (Ps): A number of times per day equal to his Charisma modifier, a frost knight of 3rd level or higher can make a layer of ice over the ground which functions as a grease spell, except that the range of this effect is 10 feet per frost knight level. Due to his Icewalking ability, the frost knight is immune to this effect. If the frost knight tries to walk on water, the surface of water will automatically freeze to accommodate his weight and that of his equipment without expending a use of Verglas. The frost knight’s armor is always treated as under a grease effect, giving him a +10 circumstance bonus on Escape Artist checks on a checks made to escape a grapple.
Aurora (Ps): As a swift action a frost knight may surround himself with a violet/blue aura, which lasts for a number of rounds equal to his frost knight level plus his Charisma modifier, multiplied by two. The frost knight may choose to use all the rounds at once or distribute them over a number of uses. At the end of each round, the frost knight must determine whether he will continue to use his aurora for the next round. If the aurora is activated during an opponent’s action, the frost knight must still use up a round and decide whether to continue using it. The save DC for any effects caused by an aurora is equal to the frost knight’s level plus his enhanced Charisma modifier.
Zero: The frost knight’s aurora functions as a light spell as cast by a wizard of his level, adds 2 to his Charisma score, fatigues all enemies in the radius for as long as the aurora is active, and incurs a -5 penalty on Hide checks.
Sub-Zero: At the second stage, the aurora acts as a daylight spell at the frost knight’s caster level, adds +4 to his Charisma, grants him the effect of a fire shield: blue spell, fatigues all enemies in the radius just like the Zero aurora, and incurs a -10 penalty on Hide checks.
Absolute Zero: The third level of the aurora unleashes a wave of cold in an 80-ft. radius centered on the frost knight the first time it is activated in any encounter, dealing 15d6 points of cold damage (Fortitude save for half). After that, it functions as a daylight spell at the frost knight’s caster level, adds 6 to the frost knight’s Charisma score, creates fire shield: blue and energy retort (cold only) effects, and creates the same fatigue effect as the other two stages and incurs a -20 circumstance penalty on Hide checks. [Note: Any of the fatigue effects can be negated by a Fortitude save, and any creature immune to fatigue (an undead, for example) is unaffected.]
Flash Freeze (Ex): At 4th level, a frost knight gains the ability to affect the temperature of the air surrounding him. This functions as an endure elements (heat or cold only) spell within a 20' radius as the frost knight either exudes heat from his body or draws it out of the air.
Freezer Burn (Ex): A foe slain by a frost knight is frozen and treated as under the effect of a gentle repose spell (caster level equal to frost knight level). This is not a magical effect and therefore cannot be dispelled. The dead character is bitterly cold to the touch, however, and anyone touching them takes 1 point of cold damage per round of exposure.
Icicle (Ps): When wielding a weapon composed entirely of metal a frost knight can forcibly cool it, causing it to harden and condense, creating a layer of sharpened ice over the surface. The weapon is still considered to be its original size in terms of its weight and the frost knight's ability to wield it, but it deals damage as if it was one size larger and also deals 2d4 points of cold damage with each hit. Additionally, the weapon causes the armor of a struck opponent to tighten constrictively; this reduces the Dexterity bonus it offers by 2 and increases the armor check penalty by 2 for 1d4 rounds. This ability is not cumulative (there is no stacking of bonuses or penalties to the opponent’s armor).
Shiver (Ps): At 6th level, a frost knight’s body constantly reduces the temperature around him in a 20 ft. radius, allowing him to lower the temperature by 2 degrees Fahrenheit per frost knight level.
Blizzard (Ps): The frost knight also gains the blink teleport skill. When the frost knight uses this ability he disappears and reappears in a gust of swirling snow. This effect is purely cosmetic and has no effect on the nature of this skill.
Chill Wind (Ps): When targeted with or in the area of any effect that deals fire damage, a frost knight may make an attempt to cancel that effect. The frost knight and his opponent make opposing rolls. If the frost knight's roll is higher, the fire effect in negated as it is immediately extinguished. The frost knight's roll is d20 + frost knight level + Charisma modifier. The entity responsible for the fire effect's check is d20 + Caster level/HD total + relevant ability score modifier.
Cryoplaning (Ex): A frost knight becomes better able to move over ice or snow at 11th level. When he is moving over ice, including that of his verglas ability, the frost knight’s base speed increases by 30 feet. This bonus increases to 60 feet at 14th level and 90 feet at 17th level and 120 at 20th level. He also takes no movement or skill penalties for moving through a snowstorm (see p.87, Dungeon Master's Guide).
Rime Armor (Ex): A frost knight is covered by an almost imperceptible layer of hardened ice. By 11th level, this ice grants him a +1 bonus to natural armor that stacks with other sources. This bonus increases to +3 at 15th level and finally +5 at 19th level capping at +7 at 23rd level.
Abominable Snowman (Ps): At 12th level, when he would be reduced to 0 hp, the frost knight instead has a chance to be discorporated. This functions as the fiery discorporation power, except that the frost knight separates into a cloud of snowflakes and reappears over a 5x5 or larger body of water which automatically freezes upon his arrival.
Frostbite (Ps): A number of times per day equal to his Charisma modifier (minimum 1), a frost knight of 12th level or higher can unleash a white cone of icy vapor that deals 1d6 damage per frost knight level (maximum 20d6). The range of the cone is 5 feet long and wide per frost knight level, up to 100 feet for both. Any creature with the aquatic subtype instead takes 1d8 damage per level (max 20d8) instead of 1d6.The damage dealt by this ability is cold damage and anyone slain by it splinters into millions of tiny ice shards, preventing them from being brought back to life by a raise dead spell or another spell that requires remains. Their equipment is also destroyed; magical items may have a Fortitude save, but all others are automatically frozen solid and come apart as well.
Hoarfrost (Ps): A number of times per day equal to his Charisma modifier (minimum 1), a 13th level frost knight can create a snowstorm that coats all enemies within a range of 10 feet per frost knight level in a thin layer of rime. While this ice does no harm, the storm functions as a slow spell, with all enemies in the storm being affected.
Gelid Blood (Ex): The frost knight’s cold resistance is replaced by cold immunity at 14th level. He now takes no damage or other ill effects from natural or magical cold. Additionally, he gains the Psychometabolism feat and can choose to take 5 on Life Extension checks because the ice coating the frost knight’s body naturally slows his aging process.
Razorhail (Ps): By cooling and solidifying the moisture in the air around him, the frost knight can create thin, razor-sharp sheets of ice that form a cloud of flying shards around him. This functions as the blade barrier spell with a caster level equal to the frost knight’s level, and can be used a number of times per day equal to his Charisma modifier (minimum of 1).
Heart of the White Wyrm (Ex): Starting at 17th level, a frost knight gains fast healing 3 in freezing weather (at or under 32ºF/0ºC) or any situation where a character without cold resistance would take cold damage. This does not include instantaneous effects like cone of cold, but does include ice storm and similar effects.
Fimbulvetr (Ps): Once per day, the frost knight of 18th level or higher can recreate the effect of an iceberg spell (p. 101, Frostburn), summoning a massive block of ice and dropping it from the sky. This ice shatters upon contact with a solid surface, splitting into elephant-sized chunks that deal damage based on how far away from the point of origin the creature is. The save DC for this spell is equal to the frost knight’s level plus his Charisma modifier.
Within 20 feet of the Center Point: Any creature or object directly under the iceberg takes 20d6 points of crushing damage (no save) and is buried in snow.
Between 20 and 40 feet from the Center Point: Creatures or objects in the middle section of the area also take 20d6 points of crushing damage, but are allowed a Reflex save for half damage. They are also buried in snow regardless of the outcome of the save.
Between 40 and 60 feet from the Center Point: Creatures in the outermost section may be struck by flying debris for 10d6 points of damage. They are entitled to a Reflex save for half damage and are not buried in snow.
A creature buried in snow can free itself with a DC 25 Strength check, or can be dug out by other creatures. In 1 minute, using only its hands, a creature can clear ice and debris equal to five times its heavy load limit. The amount of tightly packed snow that fills a 5-foot-by-5-foot area weighs 500 pounds. Armed with an appropriate tool, such as a pick, crowbar, or shovel, a digger can clear loose rubble and debris twice as quickly as by hand. The snow extinguishes all flames, normal or magical, that it touches.
Ice-Nine (Ps): At 19th level, the frost knight’s verglas ability permanently affects his space, creating an icy surface wherever he walks without a use of verglas (if he wants to affect an area, he must still expend a use of verglas). This makes the spider climb effect and movement bonus given by his icewalking and cryoplaning abilities permanent. The ice created by the frost knight’s step does not last long after he leaves, sublimating after 1 round. The ice created in this manner always forms a smooth surface no matter what terrain the frost knight is on, allowing him to move unimpeded over any terrain. He still suffers the normal movement penalties for going upwards. Because the ice turns quickly into a gas and not a liquid, the frost knight also cannot be tracked as if he is permanently under a pass without trace effect.
Permafrost (Ps): At 20th level, the frost knight can now use his aurora without limit.
A frost knight can never renege on his decision to become a frost knight. The forces of winter are in his blood, and he realizes this. Like most elemental knights he will not resist that which is in his nature.
A frost knight who becomes nonlawful cannot gain new levels as a frost knight but retains all frost knight abilities.
Like a member of any other class, a frost knight may be a multiclass character, but multiclass frost knights face a special restriction. A frost knight who gains a new class or (if already multiclass) raises another class by a level may never again raise her frost knight level, though she retains all her frost knight abilities.
Epic Frost Knights
Rime Armor: The natural armor bonus afforded to the frost knight by his rime armor continues to increase, up to +7.
Bonus Feats: The epic frost knight gains a bonus feat (selected from the list of epic frost knight bonus feats) every 3 levels after 20th.
Human Frost Knight Starting Package
Feat: Improved Initiative.
Gear: Waterskin, bedroll, winter clothing.
Gold: Same as Flare Knight.
Playing a Frost Knight
Religion: Frost knights are generally apathetic as far as religion is concerned; in their harsh existence, faith is needed in no one but themselves. Those that do worship a deity favors those of cold or winter, and often share the same deity as the frost giants in the appropriate campaign setting. Even these frost knights are rarely devout fanatics; besides an occaisonal oath or prayer to acknowledge their god's existence they will not actively partake in religious service. Thus, the frost knight's alignment rarely reflects that of his deity. Even when not religious, a frost knight is usually superstitious, believing in the omnipotence of the cold and its ability to communicate with them. A frost knight will interpret many arctic phenomena as omens for good or ill (see Frostburn for examples of unique winter weather).
Other Classes: Frost knights are loners to their ice cold core, but they are not so foolish to believe that there are no advantages to traveling in a group. While they will respect or at least tolerate most other classes for their varied abilities, they have little patience for those who cannot withstand the winter cold. Frost knights are also most unsympathetic, reacting with indifference towards the plights of others, for in the tundra the winter consumes those who cannot defend themselves. Frost knights regard flare knights with a deep sense of resentment, since they see the fire-wielding elemental knights as anathema to themselves.
Combat: A frost knight is an ideal forward combatant. While not as outwardly strong or hardy as a fighter or barbarian, he possesses a range of abilities capable of quickly debilitating numerous opponents. Because the winter cold affects most differently from him, the frost knight is often quick to bring his cold-based abilities to bear by drastically lowering the temperature around him.
Advancement: A frost knight highly favors the prestige classes from the book Frostburn, as they often already take advantage of his numerous cold-based abilities.
Frost Knights in the World
The products of an unforgiving environment, frost knights generally reflect the winter tundra that they usually hail form. Bitter, taciturn, and ruthless, they avoid contact with other beings. While brutal if provoked, a frost knight is rarely malicious enough to attack those who have shown no hostile intent.
Daily Life: The existence of the frost knight is often long and lonely. Many high-level frost knights are nigh-immortal, preserved by the ice that covers their entire bodies. While some lower level knights who have not fully adapted to cold weather may stay closer to settlements, the aforementional higher level frost knights live in solitary hermitage. If they need to deal with some other being, they are generally careless as far as alignment is concerned. Many such frost knights deal with the local frost giants, who respect their power enough to give them a wide berth.
Notables: Zlatan Thraeingr (level 21 human FrK) resides in a cave formed from solid ice that he took from an ancient white dragon in a duel that shook the tundra. The cave rests an a glacier overlooking the only supply pass in the area. Zlatan guards this pass zealously, defending any who pass through from the arctic predators that frequent the area. No one knows why he does this, but all those who live nearby don't dare venture up to the cave to ask him.
Organizations: Being the loners that they are, frost knights rarely congregate together. There is no formal organization of frost knights, but they will work with other frost knights and even, however reluctantly, with other kinds of elemental knights.
NPC Reactions: Frost knights are often clouded by a reputation of myths that claim they are disguised ice demons, giving them a bad reputation among less well-informed residents. Most NPC's will react to a frost knight's presence with a mixture of fear and awe as well as an involuntary shiver. Those who do not know of frost knights may actually mistake one for an undead. Their pale skin, incredibly slowed heartbeat (around eight times per minute), and bitterly cold body temperature all serve as false indicators of undead nature.
Frost Knight Lore
Characters with ranks in Knowledge (geography) can research frost knights to learn more about them. When a character makes a skill check, read or paraphrase the following, including information from lower DCs.
Frost Knights in the Game
Similar to knights and paladins.