Witch (3.5e Class)
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A weather-beaten woman, back bent, fingers stained, peers into the undergrowth as she combs the forest for resources overlooked by all but the few who share her ancient lore.
Making a Witch
The Witch is a skilled healer, but one who tends to utilize potions and poultices more than spells. She possesses great knowledge of plants and animals, and the various uses (including harmful ones) of their constituent parts. She can craft many useful items from these components. She spends a great deal of time wandering the wilds collecting material for her craft, and is likely a skilled tracker. She seldom loses her way in the wild, especially in areas she is familiar with, and is able to hide and move stealthily in such areas.
She is capable of defending herself from enemies who might attack her whilst she roams the wilds. She may only fight with quarterstaffs or daggers, ie, the tools of her trade. She is unlikely to wear armor, as she needs to preserve the dexterity to collect craft components and the strength to carry them, however when unarmored, she is able to dodge blows with an uncanny prescience. She can defend herself, but traveling with a more combat-oriented character will free her to focus on her offensive, healing, (de)buffing and crowd control capabilities.
She has an affinity for wild animals and may have an animal companion. She is very likely to worship a nature deity, and if so, said deity may grant her the power to cast some minor to moderate divine spells. She is attuned to the rhythms of nature, and her powers may wax and wane according to the weather, the position of the stars and the time of day, month and year. Although likely to make her home some distance from the nearest village, she is not uncharismatic, and gains psionic powers based on her charisma at higher levels.
Abilities: Wisdom is a witch's most important ability, since it is required for all her spells, including crafted item imbuement. She should have a Wisdom score of no less than 14. Dexterity is also important, for witchcrafting, material collection and processing, for stealth and for her style of combat. She should have a Dexterity score of no less than 12. Since her skills cover such a breadth of ground, she should take care not to neglect any ability, certainly not Strength (required for material collection and processing, and for carrying material and items), Intelligence (required for spell and witchcraft recipe learning, language learning, lore acquisition and recipe research) nor Charisma (required for powers should she become a cottage witch or witch lady).
Starting Gold: 1d4 ×10 gp (25 gp). Despite her long and productive training, a witch is unlikely to start her career with much gold. Witches can supply most of their needs from their environment, and those they can't, they generally prefer to meet via barter. That said, a witch is likely to have accumulated a fair selection of equipment by the time she starts her career proper: over the course of her training, she is likely to have helped many people, some of whom may have repaid her by giving her gifts, she is likely to have constructed much basic equipment herself, and her mentor will probably have given her a number of items.
Starting Age: Complex.
|Saving Throws||Special||Spells per Day|| AC|
|1st||+0||+0||+2||+2||Apply Salve to Self, Nature Sense||1||—||—||—||—||—||—||+0|
|2nd||+1||+0||+3||+3||Brew Minor Salve, Wild Empathy||1||—||—||—||—||—||—||+0|
|3rd||+1||+1||+3||+3||Erect Cauldron, Animal Companion||2||—||—||—||—||—||—||+0|
|4th||+2||+1||+4||+4||Brew Lesser Salve, Apply Salve to Other||2||1||—||—||—||—||—||+0|
|5th||+2||+1||+4||+4||Brew Minor Incense, Burn Incense||3||1||—||—||—||—||—||+0|
|6th||+3||+2||+5||+5||Erect Tripod, Brew Medium Salve||3||2||—||—||—||—||—||+0|
|7th||+3||+2||+5||+5||Apply Salve to Animal||3||2||1||—||—||—||—||+0|
|8th||+4||+2||+6||+6||Brew Lesser Incense||4||3||1||—||—||—||—||+1|
|9th||+4||+3||+6||+6||Brew Greater Salve||4||3||2||—||—||—||—||+1|
|10th||+5||+3||+7||+7||Apply Salve to Armor||4||3||2||1||—||—||—||+1|
|12th||+6/+1||+4||+8||+8||Brew Medium Incense||4||4||3||2||—||—||—||+1|
|13th||+6/+1||+4||+8||+8||Brew Major Salve||4||4||3||2||1||—||—||+1|
|14th||+7/+2||+5||+9||+9||Apply Salve to Weapon||5||4||3||3||1||—||—||+1|
|15th||+7/+2||+5||+10||+10||Brew Greater Incense||5||4||3||3||2||—||—||+1|
|16th||+8/+3||+5||+10||+10||Scribe Minor Witchglyph||5||4||3||3||2||1||—||+2|
|18th||+9/+4||+6||+11||+11||Brew Superior Salve||5||4||4||3||3||2||—||+2|
|19th||+9/+4||+6||+11||+11||Apply Salve to Object||5||4||4||3||3||2||1||+2|
|20th||+10/+5||+6||+12||+12||Brew Major Incense||6||5||4||4||3||3||1||+2|
Class Skills (4 + Int modifier per level, ×4 at 1st level)
Healing, buffing, debuffing and crowd control skills. Material collection, skinning and rendering skills. Animal charming. Outdoor navigation, tracking and stealth skills.
AC Bonus (Ex): When unarmored and unencumbered, the witch adds half (rounded up) of her Wisdom bonus (if any) to her AC. In addition, a witch gains a +1 bonus to AC at 8th level. This bonus increases by 1 for every eight witch levels thereafter.
These bonuses to AC apply even against touch attacks or when the witch is flat-footed. She loses these bonuses when she is immobilized or helpless, when she wears armor of any kind, when she carries a shield, or when she carries a medium or heavy load.
Spells (Sp): A witch casts divine spells, and her alignment may restrict her from casting certain spells opposed to her moral or ethical beliefs; see Chaotic, Evil, Good, and Lawful Spells, below. A witch must choose and prepare her spells in advance (see below).
To prepare or cast a spell, the witch must have a Wisdom score equal to at least 10 + the spell level. The Difficulty Class for a saving throw against a witch’s spell is 10 + the spell level + the witch’s Wisdom modifier.
Like other spellcasters, a witch can cast only a certain number of spells of each spell level per day. Her base daily spell allotment is given on Table: The Witch. In addition, she receives bonus spells per day if she has a high Wisdom score. She does not have access to any domain spells or granted powers, as a cleric does.
Witches meditate for their spells. Each witch must choose a time at which she must spend 1 hour each day in quiet contemplation to regain her daily allotment of spells. Time spent resting has no effect on whether a witch can prepare spells.
Spells Known: While a witch commits to memory spells she learns about rather than recording them in a spellbook as a wizard does, she may only prepare and spells that she knows of, and are of a level that she can cast.
A witch begins play knowing all 0-level witch spells plus three 1st-level spells of your choice. For each point of Intelligence bonus the witch has, she can commit to memory one additional 1st-level spell of your choice. At each new witch level, she gains two new spells of any spell level or levels that she can cast (based on her new witch level) to learn. At any time, a witch can also learn spells from other witches.
Chaotic, Evil, Good, and Lawful Spells: A witch can’t cast spells of an alignment opposed to her own or her deity’s (if she has one). Spells associated with particular alignments are indicated by the chaos, evil, good, and law descriptors in their spell descriptions.
Imbuement: A witch is granted only a limited range of directly cast spells by her deity. Instead, she is given the ability to imbue her witchcrafted items with the powers of a variety of druid spells. The powers thus imbued in an item are invoked when the item is used. The imbuement level must be equal to or less than the level of the witchcrafted item If the imbued spell has a material component, fifty copies of the component must have been added to the recipe. Verbal, somatic and focus components are utilized at the time of imbuement. The spell must be one that the witch cannot cast directly. If the item to be imbued is a salve, stick of incense, witchwand or tonic, the spell must target one or more creatures. If the item to be imbued is a candle, the spell must be an abjuration, a divination, an enchantment, an illusion or a transmutation. Spells capable of being imbued to witchstaffs depend on the type of staff. Witchglyphs cannot be imbued, and gain effects solely from their components.
A witch (and her bondmate if she has one) can tell what spell(s) an item has been imbued with; the only way for another to tell what an item has been imbued with, or even if it has been imbued at all, is through Identify spells and the like.
A witch may learn spells from the following list:
0(orisons)— As for druids plus:
- Wereflame: Creates a magical flame.
- Calm Animals: Calms (2d4 + level) HD of animals.
- Charm Animal: Makes one animal your friend.
- Entangle: Plants entangle everyone in 40-ft.-radius.
- Goodberry: 2d4 berries each cure 1 hp (max 8 hp/24 hours).
- Faerie Fire: Outlines subjects with light, canceling blur, concealment, and the like.
- Magic Fang: One natural weapon of subject creature gets +1 on attack and damage rolls.
- Magic Stone: Three stones gain +1 on attack rolls, deal 1d6+1 damage.
- Minor Imbue: Imbues a witchcrafted item with any 1st level druid spell not directly castable by the witch.
- Shillelagh: Cudgel or quarterstaff becomes +1 weapon (1d10 damage) for 1 min./level.
- Summon Nature's Ally I: Calls creature to fight.
- Animal Messenger: Sends a Tiny animal to a specific place.
- Animal Trance: Fascinates 2d6 HD of animals.
- Fire TrapM: Opened object deals 1d4 +1/level damage.
- Hold Animal: Paralyzes one animal for 1 round/level.
- Lesser Imbue: Imbues a witchcrafted item with any 2nd level druid spell not directly castable by the witch.
- Reduce Animal: Shrinks one willing animal.
- Summon Nature's Ally II: Calls creature to fight.
- Summon Swarm: Summons swarm of bats, rats, or spiders.
- Wood Shape: Rearranges wooden objects to suit you.
- Call Lightning: Calls down lightning bolts (3d6 per bolt) from sky.
- Medium Imbue: Imbues a witchcrafted item with any 3rd level druid spell not directly castable by the witch.
- Snare: Creates a magic booby trap.
- Stone Shape: Sculpts stone into any shape.
- Summon Nature's Ally III: Calls creature to fight.
- Greater Imbue: Imbues a witchcrafted item with any 4th level druid spell not directly castable by the witch.
- Summon Nature's Ally IV: Calls creature to fight.
- Major Imbue: Imbues a witchcrafted item with any 5th level druid spell not directly castable by the witch.
- Summon Nature's Ally V: Calls creature to fight.
- Superior Imbue: Imbues a witchcrafted item with any 6th level druid spell not directly castable by the witch.
- Summon Nature's Ally VI: Calls creature to fight.
Witchcraft (Ex): Witches are able to craft a variety of the items out of the material they collect and process. Each item is crafted out of a number of components: minor items are crafted from three components, lesser from five, unmodified from seven, greater from nine, major from thirteen and superior from seventeen items. These components determine the nature of the item, and much of a witch's career will be spent learning and researching item recipes. Some recipes will be more potent than others.
Each witchcrafted item will comprise at least one material item and at least one environmental one. Each item also has a prime component which has twice the normal impact upon the nature of the item, and is said to control the item.
All witchcrafted items require some sort of brew; to successfully create such a brew the witch must pass a difficulty check against her Craft (alchemy) skill as given by the following table:
In addition, witchwands and witchstaffs require the creation of a shaft for the item. To successfully create the shaft, the witch must pass a difficulty check against her Craft (whittling) skill as given by the following table:
Recipe Books: A witch cannot create any witchcrafted item whose recipe is not recorded in her recipe book. A witch's mentor will gift her a recipe book upon attainment of 2nd level, containing three minor salve recipes of your choice. For each Intelligence bonus the wizard has, the recipe book will hold one additional minor salve recipe of your choice. At 4th level, a witch's mentor will gift her a lesser salve recipe for her to use for her prentice piece. Other than this, a witch never gains recipes automatically. Instead she must research them or else copy them from other witches' recipes to her own. Her mentor will allow her to copy her recipe book upon graduation; other witches must be persuaded or tricked into giving her access.
Researching Recipes: A witch can conduct research into new recipes. This usually entails a degree of trial and error. Other witches may teach her about component properties, or she may pick them up from more general sources (tested by Knowledge (nature) skill checks), which will give her clues as to how to formulate a recipe that will give the desired result. Or she may simply pick a component that she has to hand at random, to determine its properties experimentally. She will create a witchcrafted item according to the test recipe, and then analyze its effects using her Witchcraft skill. The results may lead to a useful recipe, or else guide her towards further tests.
Salves: A witch gains bonus feats to create increasing complexities of salves at 2nd (minor), 4th (lesser), 6th (medium), 9th (greater), 12th (major) and 16th (superior) levels. Salves are unguents that can be used to coat areas of skin, fur, metal, wood, etc and affect the coated area in ways particular to the salve recipe. Brewing a salve requires the use of a cauldron for brewing and a salve jar to put it in. The Apply Salve ability is required to utilize a salve correctly, otherwise an application is wasted. A newly created salve has 50 applications.
Apply Salve: A witch begins her career knowing how to apply a salve to her own body, at 4th level she learns to apply one to another humanoid, at 7th level to an animal, at 10th level to a piece of armor, at 13th level to a weapon and at 16th level to any material object. The skill covers how to choose the appropriate target area for the salve, how to physically coat the target area with the salve, and how to invoke the salve's powers. Applying a salve is subject to the same rules as applying an oil.
Incense: A witch gains bonus feats to create increasing complexities of incense at 5th (minor), 7th (lesser), 10th (medium) and 15th (greater) levels. Incense are sticks that can be burnt to create an aura effect particular to the incense recipe. Brewing a stick of incense requires the use of a cauldron for brewing and an incense mold to dry it in. The Burn Incense ability is required to utilize a stick of incense correctly, otherwise a hour of burn time is wasted. A newly created incense stick will burn for 50 hours.
Burn Incense: At 5th level, a witch gains the knowledge to correctly keep a stick of incense smoldering and how to invoke its powers. An incense stick must be burned in an implement, either a holder or a brazier. The latter doubles the area of effect of the incense. A brazier can also be carried so as to move the aura with the carrier, or hung from a tripod. If carried, it must be swung in a witch's hands, therefore the witch cannot simultaneously undertake any other activity that uses her hands, such as wielding a weapon or casting a spell with a somatic component. <- activation rules ->
Witchglyphs: A witch learns how to scribe minor witchglyphs at 16th level. Knowledge of how to scribe more complex witchglyphs can be obtained by witch ladies. Witchglyphs create effects particular to the witchglyph recipe, over a wide area (a mile or more). They exist until destroyed or dismissed, but must be periodically reinvoked. The Invoke Witchglyph skill is required to utilize a witchglyph correctly. Witchglyphs cannot be imbued.
Invoke Witchglyph: At 17th level, a witch gains the power to invoke witchglyphs, activating or reactivating them. A newly scribed witchglyph, or one whose duration has expired, is dormant until invoked; it exists, but it does not radiate any effects.
Component Types: Each component specified by a witchcraft recipe will belong to a particular type that defines how it is gathered and processed, what effect it bestows on the item crafted, and what field of knowledge information about it is obtained from.
- Altitude: Knowledge (geography).
- Asana: Body and hand positions, the equivalent of the somatic components of spells. Knowledge (nature).
- Bark: Bestows protective properties particular to the plant the component was extracted from. Knowledge (plant lore).
- Blood: Knowledge (animal lore).
- Bone: Knowledge (animal lore).
- Climate: Knowledge (geography).
- Elements: Knowledge (elemental lore).
- Essential Oils: Includes musks, rendered animal fats, plant oils and mineral oils. Knowledge (elemental lore).
- Flesh: Animal tissues, including muscle, tendons and organs. Knowledge (animal lore).
- Flowers: Knowledge (plant lore).
- Fruit: Knowledge (plant lore).
- Fur: Animal fur, including hair, scales and any other body part that can be shed or extracted without harm. Bestow absorbent properties particular to the animus the components were extracted from. Example: cut snowshoe rabbit tail fur, absorbs up to 5hp of damage, boost reflected rising waxing crescent moonlight absorbs up to 10hp of damage, bane fresh golden lynx eyes -1 Wis for 5 minutes. Knowledge (animal lore).
- Latitude: Knowledge (geography).
- Leaves: Knowledge (plant lore).
- Lunar Phase: Bestows properties of increase and decrease. Knowledge (astrology).
- Planetary Alignment: Knowledge (astrology).
- Rare Earths: Knowledge (elemental lore).
- Roots: Knowledge (plant lore).
- Seeds: Includes nuts and pips. Bestows germinative properties. Knowledge (plant lore).
- Skin: Animal skins, includes hides and any other body covering that can usually only be extracted by injuring or killing the creature, however some animals shed their skins naturally. Bestow protective properties particular to the animals the components were extracted from. Knowledge (animal lore).
- Stems: Knowledge (plant lore).
- Souls: Knowledge (animal lore).
- Terrain: Knowledge (geography).
- Time of Day: Knowledge (astrology).
- Time of Year: Knowledge (astrology).
- Weather: Knowledge (astrology).
- Wood: Knowledge (plant lore).
Bonus Languages: A witch may substitute Sylvan, the language of woodland creatures, for one of the bonus languages available to the character because of her race.
All witches are taught the Druidic language by their mentors, and must not ever reveal this language to any nonwitch. Druidic is a free language for a witch; that is, she knows it in addition to her regular allotment of languages and it doesn’t take up a language slot. Druidic is written only, has its own runic alphabet and is used to record recipes and to mark areas of interest or danger to other witches.
Erect Cauldron (Ex): A witch can quickly erect a portable cauldron by stretching a dampened sheet of leather between a stick framework and then keep it from burning when placed over a flame. The cauldron can be used to create witch items and may be destroyed if allowed to dry out whilst over said flame.
Animal Companion (Ex): At 3rd level witch may gain an animal companion selected from the following list: badger, dire rat, eagle, hawk, owl, snake (Small or Medium viper), or wolf. If the campaign takes place wholly or partly in an aquatic environment, the following creatures are also available: crocodile, porpoise, Medium shark, and squid. This animal is a loyal companion that accompanies the witch on her adventures as appropriate for its kind.
A 3rd-level witch’s companion is completely typical for its kind as for 1st level druid animal companions. As a witch advances in level, the animal’s power increases as shown for druids, except that the class level is two levels less than that of the witch. The witch’s class levels stack with levels of any other classes that are entitled to an animal companion for the purpose of determining the companion’s abilities and the alternative lists available to the character. To gain a compainion or replace one that has perished or been released from service, a witch performs a ceremony requiring 24 uninterrupted hours of prayer. This ceremony can also replace an animal companion that has perished.
A witch of 6th level or higher may select from the druid's Alternative Animal Companions list two levels beneath her own. Should she select an animal companion from one of these alternative lists, the creature gains abilities as if the character’s witch's level were lower than it actually is. Subtract the value indicated in the appropriate list header from the character’s witch level and compare the result with the druid level entry on the table to determine the animal companion’s powers. (If this adjustment would reduce the druid’s effective level to 0 or lower, she can’t have that animal as a companion.)
Wild Empathy (Ex): Beginning at 2nd level, a witch can improve the attitude of an animal. This ability functions just like a Diplomacy check to improve the attitude of a person. The witch rolls 1d20 and adds her witch level and her Charisma bonus to determine the wild empathy check result. The typical domestic animal has a starting attitude of indifferent, while wild animals are usually unfriendly.
To use wild empathy, the witch and the animal must be able to study each other, which means that they must be within 30 feet of one another under normal visibility conditions. Generally, influencing an animal in this way takes 1 minute, but, as with influencing people, it might take more or less time.
The witch can also use this ability to influence a magical beast with an Intelligence score of 1 or 2, but she takes a –4 penalty on the check.
Erect Tripod (Ex): At 6th level, a witch learns how to quickly erect a portable tripod using sticks and twine. The tripod can be used to hang a burning brazier from, freeing a witch from the need to swing it (enabling her, for instance, to engage in melee combat).
Venom Immunity (Ex): At 15th level, a witch gains immunity to all poisons.
A witch whose dexterity drops below 10 loses the ability to collect and process components, and the ability to create witchcrafted items. Those whose alignment strays from that of their deity, or who choose not to worship any, lose the ability to cast divine spells, and although they retain the ability to create witchcrafted items, they lose the ability to imbue them with divine properties.
A witch who ceases to revere nature, changes to a prohibited alignment, or teaches the Druidic language to a nonwitch loses all spells and witch abilities including her animal companion; she retains her weapon proficiencies but loses her AC bonuses. She cannot thereafter gain levels as a witch until she atones (see the atonement spell description).
4 + Int modifier skill points per level.
Animal Companion: The witch’s animal companion continues to increase in power. Every three levels higher than 20th level, the animal companion gains 2 bonus hit dice, +1 Strength and Dexterity, and an additional trick.
Witchcraft Feats: The witch gains a witchcraft feat every four levels after the 17th.
Epic Witch Bonus Feat List: Armor Skin, Augmented Alchemy, Brew Epic Incense, Brew Epic Salve, Brew Epic Tonic, Craft Epic Witchwand, Efficient Item Creation, Energy Resistance, Epic Skill Focus, Epic Will, Great Dexterity, Great Wisdom, Ignore Material Components, Improved Combat Casting, Improved Darkvision, Improved Low-Light Vision, Improved Metamagic, Improved Spell Resistance, Legendary Tracker, Master Wand (applies to witchwands), Polyglot, Spontaneous Spell, Tenacious Magic.
Half Elven Witch Starting Package
Skill Selection: Pick a number of skills equal to 4 + Int modifier.
|Profession (village witch)||4||Wis||—|
Gear: explorer's outfit of sturdy boots; woolen skirt; spell component pouch, artisan's tools and flask on a leather belt; leather gloves; linen blouse; pocketed leather overtunic; pocketed long woolen cloak; backpack containing winter blanket, sewing needle, merchant's scale and whetstone; and wooden holy symbol.
Playing a Witch
Religion: A witch will almost certainly worship a patron deity, since without one she loses many of her powers. Said deity will most likely be a nature and/or lore deity, or an air/water elemental. She is likely to take her religion very seriously, and have a close and meaningful relationship with her deity, but is seldom evangelical about it, preferring to work quietly to spread to values of her religion instead.
Other Classes: The witch typically acts as a healer and (de)buffer in a group. She will generally be fairly adept at protecting herself from fighter-type creatures, but fair poorly against rogues, and will adjust her likeliness to engage them accordingly.
Witches are likely to be friendly toward but not close to other witches. A witch will generally abhor any character that acts in a way disrespectful to nature or to her chosen deity (if she has one). Stupid or naive characters may be frightened of her, if not subject to her charms. Most witches will retain a relationship with their mentors. A cottage witch may have an apprentice. A witch lady will be bonded to a magician lord.
Combat: On her own, a witch prefers to use her stealth and cunning to gain the upper hand over an opponent. She will travel prepared for combat by coating her body, armor and any weapons she uses with appropriate salves, and by casting spells of protection and detection. She will use her abilities to hide and move silently to observe and track her enemy, then surprise it with distance attack. She may well choose to charm any animals or people rather than fight them. Once engaged, she will utilize her ability to move quickly to remain out of reach of her opponent, whilst debuffing it and buffing herself. She may summon animals to her aid. She will use her combat skills and spells to finish it off.
In a group, the witch may well be freed from the need to defend herself by the actions of her companions. She will then focus on buffing party members and debuffing enemies, on calling upon her companion and summoning animals for aid, on utilizing items of protection and attack, and on healing herself and her companions. If out of appropriate spells and items, she will attempt to sneak around opponents and attack their backs.
Witchling: Up to around 4th level, the witch will probably be completing her apprenticeship with her mentor, a cottage witch. This apprenticeship is likely to have begun when the witch was a child or adolescent, but these levels represent the final stages of her training, when she is trusted to perform many tasks and errands on her own, and may be left in charge of the cottage and village while her mentor travels abroad. An apprentice witch is known informally as a witchling. Her mentor will still guide her steps, will likely lend her use (possibly restricted use) of the cottage, and will aid her in acquiring her animal companion when the time comes.
A body witch will dual-class as a monk. An intelligent witches may choose to dual-class as a brahmin to further her quest for enlightenment and enhance her spell-casting abilities. During her apprenticeship, the witchling is likely to pick up the Alertness, Animal Affinity, Combat Casting, Diligent, Dodge, Imprint Stone, Magical Aptitude, Self-Sufficient or Track feats.
Graduation: A witchling will need to complete a prentice piece and have it approved by her mentor in order to graduate. The nature of the prentice piece will determined by the mentor, but traditionally consists of a lesser salve brewed in the witchlings own portable leather cauldron, given a lesser imbuement. Generally speaking, the witchling is expected to be able to take care of the health of a village on her own and to have acquired an animal companion by this stage.
Hedge Witch: After she graduates from her apprenticeship, the witch will likely undertake a journeywomanship, up to about 11th character level. During this time the witch generally has no fixed abode, and travels widely, learning all she can from any witches she encounters, honing her craft, and seeking out an appropriate locale for her future cottage. At these levels, she is known as a hedge witch, or witch wanderer.
During her journeywomanship, a witch may choose to become a deviant or sage, to better understand the world around her. She may become a con artist in order to gain access to more lore and recipes. She may become a horizon walker or master adventurer, since she knows that she will always undertake a lot of travel, even after building her cottage, in order to collect materiel, carry out pastoral work in her future village, and protect her future estate(s). She may travel so widely and encounter so many different languages as to warrant becoming a master of the spoken word.
Cottage Witch: Past 10th character level, a witch is likely to build and occupy a cottage, and strive to be accepted by the local village. A witch who has done so is known as a cottage witch. She may travel away from her cottage, but in doing so runs the risk of losing her cottage and or the approval of her village. Neighboring witches may "hold the fort" for one another during absences to prevent such unhappy events, and 11th level witches do gain the spells Sanctum and Hold Favor to decrease their likelihood. A witch may take on an apprentice at this stage, who will carry out errands and perform tasks for the witch in return for training in witchcraft.
Witch Lady: Past 20th level, a witch is likely to marry or otherwise permanently pair with a mage smith, and establish an estate surrounding his tower. A witch who has done so is known as a witch lady. The mage smith likewise thus becomes a mage lord. Such a pairing of witch and magician is known as a spirit bond, where the magician becomes the animus to the witch's anima, the whole being greater than the sum of the parts. Most of the epic abilities of each member derive from this bond. Each partner can continue to refine their own strengths and abilities, whilst drawing on the strengths of the other partner to shore up their weaknesses.
Note that the genders here are archetypal. A witch lord may be bonded to a magician lady, or two lords or two ladies may be bonded; the only stipulation being that one partner must be a witch and one a magician, in order for their strengths and weaknesses to complement.
The magical pair may attract tenants onto their estate. In return for coming under the pair's protection and for use of the land, their tenants will pay the pair a set rent per year, usually consisting of materiel and/or gold, plus agreed upon combat/construction/crafting/transportation services as required.
The pair may choose to erect their tower under another pair of higher level, in order to come under their protection. They will do this by swearing fealty to the higher level pair and become their vassals. In return for the protection of their lieges, the pair will commit to providing regular service of some sort to them, usually consisting of the delivery of a set number of witchcrafted and magesmithcrafted items per year and/or combat services as required. As they gain in levels, the pair will likely start to attract vassals of their own.
Witch Queen: Past 30th level, a witch may become a witch queen. She does this by undergoing a coronation along with her mate (who becomes a mage king), establishing her lands as a dominion beholden to none but the gods. In order to do this, the pair must have established a substantial holding of tower(s) and estate(s), and must have attracted a goodly number of tenants and vassals.
Witches in the World
|“||She was a witch. That was quite acceptable in the Ramtops, and no one had a bad word to say about witches. At least, not if he wanted to wake up in the morning the same shape as he went to bed.||”|
|—Terry Pratchett, about Granny Weatherwax, Human Witch|
The witch is constantly on the move, seeking materiel, hunting out recipes and lore, attending to her village, protecting her estate. She is seldom seen in heavily built up areas. The terrain which she frequents is likely to reflect the her school of witchcraft and the resources found therein. Regardless of school, she is always in touch with the natural world.
Daily Life: A witch's day revolves around the collection and processing of craft materiel. Since this must be done on particular days and at particular times of day, what she does on any particular day will vary to reflect this. The witch must also spend an hour in meditation in order to prepare her spells; this will usually be done in the evening before bed.
A witch may spend considerable time attending to the health needs of others. A cottage witch will travel around her associated village one a week or so to attend to the bedridden and improve the general health of the region. A witch lady will travel around her estate one a week or so to shore up her spells of protection.
Organizations: A witch will likely always keep in touch with her mentor, the older witch who was in charge of her early training. A cottage witch will be well known and appreciated by the local populace, and probably belongs to a coven of neighboring witches. A witch lady will be mated with a magician lord, and will belong to the Magical Nobility, and most likely have both a number of tenants working her estate(s), and a number of vassals under her protection. She may also serve a liege herself. A witch queen will serve no one, but will belong to the Magical Royalty, and have a large number of tenants and vassals.
NPC Reactions: NPCs are likely to be frightened or suspiciious of low level witches, as their craft is obscure and often misundersood. Higher level witches can usually use their skills and charisma to induce more favorable reactions.
Characters with ranks in Knowledge (Arcana, Geography, Nature, Nobility/Royalty, Psionics, The Planes and Religion) can research Witches to learn more about them. When a character makes a skill check, read or paraphrase the following, including information from lower DCs.
DC 15: Witches have their own alphabet.
DC 20: A powerful witch may be in league with a magician and share his tower.
DC 5: Witches are able to brew magical items.
DC 10: Witches often live in cottages.
DC 15: Cottage witches attend to the health of those living in the local area.
DC 20: Witches are able to brew salves and tonics from a variety of components they gather and process themselves.
DC 25: Witches are able to brew incense, to craft candles, witchwands and witchstaffs.
DC 30: A powerful witch is able to brew create witchglyphs to protect her lands.
DC 5: Witches use plant and animal products to brew their magical items.
DC 10: Witches have an affinity for animals.
DC 15: Witches usually have an animal companion.
DC 20: Witches are capable of summoning animals to their aid.
DC 20: A powerful witch may be a member of the nobility and have vassals and tenants.
DC 10: Witches possess psionic powers.
Knowledge (The Planes):
DC 20: A powerful witch is able to act as an anchor for her bondmate while he travels the planes.
DC 10: Witches usually revere nature deities and those who do are able to cast some druidic spells.
DC 20: Witches with divine spellcasting abilities are able to imbue the items they craft with druidic properties.
Witches in the Game
Witches fill similar roles to priests and espeically druids, although they tend to be more lore oriented. Primarily, they are dispensers of wisdom, and are adept appraisers, whether of items, people or situations.
Schools of Witchcraft:
A witch belongs to the school of witchcraft in witchcraft in which she was trained (always the same school as her mentor). The school determines the types of prime component of her witchcrafted items.
Blood Witchcraft: Blood witches use animal lore (blood, bone, flesh, fur, skin and souls) to control their items. Blood witches are always neutral evil in alignment, and are likely to settle in woodland or prairie regions.
Body Witchcraft: Body witches eschew the use of weapons at all, and focus instead on turning their own bodies into weapons. Witches schooled in this tradition train also as monks, and thus gain the monk's range of combat abilities. These witches focus their craft on knowledge and control of their own bodies, and are far less reticent about engaging in melee combat than the average witch. Body witches use anatomy (asana, blood, mudra, song) to control their items. Body witches are always true neutral in alignment, and are likely to settle in balanced regions, close to all four elements.
Earth Witchcraft: Earth witches use geography (altitude, climate, latitude and terrain) to control their items. Earth witches can be of any alignment allowed to witches. Neutral good witches are likely to settle in cool areas. Lawful neutral witches are likely to favor hilly areas. True neutral witches are likely to settle in central regions. Chaotic neutral witches are likely to favor coastal areas, while neutral evil witches prefer hot ones.
Elemental Witchcraft: Elemental witches use the elemental lore (elements, essential oils and rare earths) to control their items. Elemental witches can be of any alignment allowed to witches. Neutral good witches are likely to favor water and air and to settle in misty, mountainous regions. Chaotic neutral witches are likely to favor water and fire and to settle in warm, coastal regions. Neutral witches will use all elements in balance and may settle anywhere. Lawful neutral witches are likely to favor air and earth and to settle in dry, mountainous regions. Neutral evil witches are likely to favor fire and earth and to favor volcanic or desert regions.
Green Witchcraft: Green witches use plant lore (bark, flowers, fruit, leaves, roots, seeds, stems and wood) to control their items. Green witches are always neutral good in alignment, and are likely to settle in woodland or prairie regions.
Sky Witchcraft: Sky witches use astrology (weather, planetary alignment, lunar phase, time of day and time of year) to control their items. Sky witches can be of any alignment allowed to witches, and are likely to settle in mountainous regions.
EL 10: Bubble, bubble, toil and trouble.
A party gets lost in a deep forest and stumbles upon a ramshackle old cottage. Entering it, they encounter an old crone. She is a 10th level human witch (<-- stats--> and her animal companion, an 8th level wolf (<-- stats -->).
The witch will normally be happy to provide food and lodgings overnight to the party. The witch may be induced to divulge some helpful information concerning the goal the party is striving after and the direction they should take to reach it. If especially friendly, the witch may give the party one or several useful witchcrafted items, and cure party members of anything that ails them. If angry or frightened, however, the witch and her wolf will fight to the death to protect her cottage.