Tarot Mage (3.5e Class)
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For centuries practitioners of magic have used different foci to harness or augment their powers. Tarot magic is an extremely specialized school. Its spellcasters are wizards who forsake normal spellbooks in favor of the magic of the tarot deck. With a complete deck of 78 arcane tarot cards, a tarot mage has the potential of casting any known spell.
There are two kinds of tarot decks; the mundane deck is a tool that the tarot mage can use to read fortunes and entertain the masses. The other deck is a special, arcane deck that allows the mage to cast certain spells. One goal of tarot mages is to find the magic cards or locate the materials necessary to create these magical devices. Tarot mages will protectively guard t heir special decks because without them, they lose much of the arcane power.
Making a Tarot Mage
Abilities: Intelligence determines how powerful a spell a tarot mage can cast, how many spells the tarot mage can cast per day, and how hard those spells are to resist. To cast a spell, a tarot mage must have an Intelligence score of 10 + the spell's level. A tarot mage gets bonus spells based on lntelligence. The Difficulty Class of a saving throw against a tarot mage's spell is 10 + the spell's level+ the tarot mage's Intelligence modifier. Since tarot mages often strive to impress and entertain the crowd, high Charisma is a valued trait.
Races: Open to any race; Dwarves, however, rarely choose this class.
Starting Gold: 4d6×10 gp (140gp).
|Saving Throws||Special||Spells per Day|
|3rd||+1||+1||+1||+3||Craft Minor Arcana||4||2||1||—||—||—||—||—||—||—|
|9th||+4||+3||+3||+6||Craft Major Arcana||4||4||4||3||2||1||—||—||—||—|
Class Skills (2 + Int modifier per level, ×4 at 1st level)
Weapon and Armor Proficiency: The Tarot Mage is proficient with all simple weapons, but not any type of armor or shield.
Non-Metal armor does not affect the Tarot Mage's spellcasting because she does not need a full range of movement in order to cast the spell. The tarot mage channels her powers through the tarot cards that act as a foci for the magic; however, because of the nature of the magic being harnessed, metal armor does interfere. Arcane Spell Failure applies for all metal armor.
Spells: A tarot mage is a blend of wizard and sorcerer. Just as a wizard must have his spellbook in order to prepare spells, the tarot mage must have a tarot deck through which to focus arcane power. The tarot mage does not need to specify individual spells per day. As long as a tarot mage has a certain tarot card and she is of the requisite level, the mage can cast any spell associated with the card. To cast a spell, a tarot mage must have an Intelligence score of 10 + the spell's level. A tarot mage gets bonus spells based on Intelligence. The Difficulty Class of a saving throw against a tarot mage's spell is 10 + the spell's level + the tarot mage's Intelligence modifier.
The tarot mage can cast cantrips without the aid of the tarot cards, and these are drawn from the same spell list as a sorcerer or wizard. The number of cantrips known depends on the tarot mage's level.
|Level||Number of Cantrips Known|
The other spells come from tarot cards, and the number of spells known by a tarot mage will depend on the number and type of cards that she has crafted, found, or otherwise obtained. At first level, a tarot mage should have 4 minor arcana and 2 major arcana cards. In addition, the mage should gain one minor arcana tarot card per level of experience. The card must allow the casting of a spell within the mage's capabilities (i .e. it cannot be for a spell higher level than she can cast).
Beyond that, the character must adventure to locate new tarot cards or the materials to craft them. Until the tarot mage has acquired a new card, she is limited to casting the spells available from the cards already in his her possession. If a tarot mage finds a tarot card, she must attune herself to the card before she can cast from it - a process that takes a full day of study. If the tarot mage crafts the card, it can be used immediately upon creation.
Craft Minor Arcana: At third level, The Tarot mage gains the Craft Minor Arcana feat.
Bonus Feats: At fifth level, The tarot mage may choose any metamagic or item creation feat which she qualifies for as a bonus feat. This occurs again at twelfth, and eighteenth levels.
Craft Major Arcana: At ninth level, the Tarot mage gains the Craft Major Arcana feat.
Playing a Tarot Mage
Religion: Tarot Mages tend to worship beings aligned with the magical sphere of the world, as well as deities of chance and prosperity. Most importantly, however, is that Tarot mages worship deities who grant them arcana.
Other Classes: Tarot mages get along with bards, due to their shared love of entertainment, and with Wizards and Sorcerers, due to their similar spells. Other classes might view the Tarot mage as a charlatan at times, or as a sporadic character, but most have neutral opinions, otherwise.
Combat: The Tarot mage fulfills a specialized arcane spellcasting slot. It's magic is unique, but limited in uses and to specific arcana present, therefore functions as a wizard with greater boundaries in spell capacity, but similar or greater narrowed scope in implementation.
Advancement: Tarot Mages often remain full class until completing their Tarot Deck. It is not uncommon for Sorcerers or Wizards to become Tarot Mages, however. A small number of bards may also choose to do so.
Tarot Mages in the World
|“||"The fool meets a magician in his wanderings, who kindly asks for his haversack. Holding his rod to the heavens, and his finger to the ground, the haversack unfolds with many items; The Sword, the Staff, the Pentacle and the Cup, each with its own virtues. Were these items in the sack to begin with? Or were they simply a clever illusion of the magician?"||”|
|—Jaelana, Elven Tarot Mage|
Tarot Mages make their livings giving fortunes, and serving as counsel to many superstitious rulers. They also double as a powerful spellcaster, and can easily be a troubadour, or assassin, owing to a large variety of potential roles.
Tarot Mage Lore
Characters with ranks in Knowledge (Tarot) can research Tarot Mages to learn more about them. When a character makes a skill check, read or paraphrase the following, including information from lower DCs.
|5||Tarot Mages are seers who use Tarot cards to divine and cast spells.|
|10||While arcane, Tarot Mages have unique spells, different from other classes.|
|15||Arcana are often sought after by Tarot Mages, especially Major Arcana; Cards capable of turning the tides on fierce battles.|
|20||Very few Tarot Mages have acquired a full deck of Tarot cards, but those who have often go on to become more powerful than can be imagined. Hundreds of spells at one's fingertips in an instant.|