Burattinaio (3.5e Class)

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The Burattinaio[edit]

A performer at heart, the Burattinaio loves to act out scenes using his marionettes, controlled by strings attached to his fingers. In fact, he takes acting seriously, considering each puppet to have a unique character and personality with it. He travels city to city, enjoying the looks on peoples' faces when he strikes at the chords of their hearts with his skits.

Making a Burattinaio[edit]

A Burattinaio is heavily reliant on the use of his marionettes, so a large assortment of marionettes will help him conserve time while he assists on the frontlines. His strategy is influenced by positions and customization. He is best suited for staying far in the back and avoiding attacks while distracting the enemy.

Abilities: His most important ability is his Charisma, as it sets out many of his skills and the difficulty class of his abilities. His Dexterity and Constitution come in second as they allow the Burattinaio to avoid attacks or at least survive attacks.

Races: Generally, any race who enjoys theater and performance are more likely to have Burattinai. Halflings and Gnomes are likely candidates, although they use smaller marionettes. Humans, due to their varying degrees of personality, are a close second.

Alignment: Any

Starting Gold: 4d4 x 10 gp

Starting Age: Moderate

Table: The Burattinaio

Hit Die: d6

Level Base
Attack Bonus
Saving Throws Special
Fort Ref Will
1st +0 +0 +0 +2 Marionette, Portray Roles (Ex)
2nd +1 +0 +0 +3 -
3rd +1 +1 +1 +3 Portray Maiden (Sp), Throw Voice (Su)
4th +2 +1 +1 +4 Dancing Fingers +1 (Ex)
5th +2 +1 +1 +4 -
6th +3 +2 +2 +5 Portray Scholar (Sp)
7th +3 +2 +2 +5 Change Personalities (Ex)
8th +4 +2 +2 +6 Dancing Fingers +2 (Ex)
9th +4 +3 +3 +6 Portray Priest (Sp)
10th +5 +3 +3 +7 -
11th +5 +3 +3 +7 Sudden Withdrawal (Ex)
12th +6/+1 +4 +4 +8 Portray Oracle (Sp), Dancing Fingers +3
13th +6/+1 +4 +4 +8 Mannequin
14th +7/+2 +4 +4 +9 Quick Fix (Ex)
15th +7/+2 +5 +5 +9 Portray Monarch (Sp)
16th +8/+3 +5 +5 +10 Dancing Fingers +4 (Ex), Collapse (Su)
17th +8/+3 +5 +5 +10 -
18th +9/+4 +6 +6 +11 Spectacular Demise (Su)
19th +9/+4 +6 +6 +11 -
20th +10/+5 +6 +6 +12 Dancing Fingers +5 (Ex)

Class Skills (6 + Int modifier per level, ×4 at 1st level)
Bluff (Cha), Concentration (Con), Diplomacy (Cha), Disguise (Cha), Gather Information (Cha), Hide (Dex), Perform (Cha), Use Magic Device (Cha).

Class Features[edit]

All of the following are class features of the Burattinaio.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency: Burattinai are proficient with all simple weapons. Burattinai are proficient with light armor, but not shields.

Marionette: At first level, the Burattinaio gains a marionette. The marionete is treated as a construct of a size smaller than the Burattinaio and has the traits of a construct. In addition to having no Constitution score, the marionette also does not have an Intelligence score. The marionette is made of wood, so it is vulnerable to fire. If it receives fire damage, it must make a Reflex save (DC = 10 + fire damage) or catch on fire. If it fails, it receives 3 point of damage each of its rounds until it is either hit with cold damage or healed.

The marionette has a hit dice of d4 and gains a number of hit dice equal to the Burattinaio's class level. Although, if the Burattinaio were to gain a number of hit points less than four when he levels, then the marionette must gain that amount of hit points if it were to roll a number greater than it (i.e. Pietro Radillo, upon gaining a level, received a total of 2 hit points. His marionette, if it were to roll a 3 or 4, must instead receive 2 hit points. If it were to receive a 1, it only gains 1 hit point.) Feats such as Toughness does not change the limit on the marionette's hit points.

The marionette receives the same base attack bonus, save bonuses, skills, and feats that the Burattinaio has with the exception of feats in which he must be able to cast spells. The marionette's ability scores are equal to 1/2 Burattinaio's ability scores + charisma modifier (i.e. Pietro, who has a strength of 12 and a charisma of 16, would have a marionette with a strength of 6+3 and 8+3). The marionette has the same land speed as the Burattinaio and is able to move a distance of 30ft. + 10ft/class level away from the Burattinaio, but does not have any other forms of travel that the Burattinaio would. The marionette is proficient with any weapon or armor that the Burattinaio is proficient with, but the equipment must be a size smaller than the Burattinaio.

The marionette is directed by the Burattinaio by his strings. Each standard or move action performed by the marionette must be provided by the Burattinaio. Each standard or move action affects all of his marionettes (i.e. If he uses a move action to move his marionettes, they must move at least 5ft.) Due to the Burattinaio having to control his marionette using his hands, he is unable to attack while controlling marionettes. His strings are invisible to the naked eye and soft enough so that a creature may walk between a Burattinaio and his marionette without feeling it or pulling on any strings. Although the strings are not directly affected physically, if the marionette or the Burattinaio enter an area that dispels magic, the strings disappear and the marionette is considered permanently prone for the duration of the dispelling. The marionette counts as one of the marionettes currently being controlled by the Burattinaio. The marionette can be retrieved and stored by the Burattinaio as described below.

A Burattinaio can bring out another marionette as a free action and store one as a free action. Marionettes brought out must be placed in an adjacent space to the Burattinaio. Similarly, a marionette stored must have been in a space adjacent to the Burattinaio.

The Burattinaio is able to use a number of different marionettes. Based on his charisma bonus, he gains an extra marionette. However, he can only control two at a time. Controlling one marionette only does not have any benefits. Small marionettes weigh 7 lbs., while a medium marionettes weighs 11 lbs. and a tiny marionettes weighs 3 lbs. Burattinai can only use marionettes one size smaller than themselves.

A marionette that has been destroyed can easily be replaced. The Burattinaio must spend one hour rebuilding a marionette if he has tools or one day if he doesn't. If in a town, the Burattinaio can spend 100 gp per marionette on tools and must make a Concentration check of 10 + 2 per marionette he intends to create. If he is in an area where he could find some type of wood material, he or another person can make a Search or Survival check of 15 to find wood. If he decides do this, he must have some type of light slashing weapon that he is proficient with to create a marionette, although he can only create one per day through this way and must make a Concentration check of 25.

Portray Roles (Ex): In the theatre, an actor becomes many different persons. The Burattinaio can change the way his marionette is portrayed, changing vital areas of its character. As a full-round action that requires his marionette to be in an adjacent square to him, the Burattinaio can deconstruct and reconstruct the marionette's character and give it one role. While the Burattinaio is working on his marionette, the two share the same square and he is considered to be both prone and helpless for their bonuses and penalties (melee attacks against the Burattinaio get a total bonus of +8, he gains a bonus of +4 to his armor class against ranged attacks, and able to be sneak attacked) until the start of his next turn. He cannot, however, receive a coup de grace attack.

During the time that he is helpless and prone, he wields his marionette as a shield equivalent to a heavy wooden shield and gains a bonus to his armor class of +2. If he were to be successfully attacked, the marionette receives the damage for him instead. If the marionette is dropped to 0 hit points or less, it is immediately destroyed and the Burattinaio is no longer considered as helpless or prone. If the marionette catches on fire or is currently on fire, the Burattinaio must make a Reflex save (DC = 10) or receive i point of fire damage. When he is finished working on the marionette, it is healed as if affected by a Repair Light Damage spell with a caster level of 1/2 class level + charisma modifier. At 4th, 8th, and 12th level, this increases to Cure Moderate Damage, Cure Serious Damage, and Cure Critical Damage.

Hero (Ex): A Burattinaio with 3 or more ranks in Perform (acting) can have his marionette be a hero. A marionette hero gains a +2 enhancement bonus to its saves.

Villain (Ex): A Burattinaio with 3 or more ranks in Perform (acting) can have his marionette be a villain. A marionette villain gains a +2 competence bonus to its Intimidate and Diplomacy checks.

Thief (Ex): A Burattinaio with 3 or more ranks in Perform (acting) can have his marionette be a thief. A marionette thief gains a +2 competence bonus to its Sleight of Hands and Tumble checks.

Guard (Ex): A Burattinaio with 3 or more ranks in Perform (acting) can have his marionette be a guard. A marionette guard gains a +2 enhancement bonus to its armor class.

Maiden (Sp): A Burattinaio at 3rd level with 6 or more ranks in Perform (acting) can have his marionette be a maiden. A marionette maiden can use the Enthrall spell as a spell-like ability at will with its caster level equal to 1/2 Burattinaio levels + Burattinaio's charisma modifier + marionette's charisma modifier.

Scholar (Ex): A Burattinaio at 6th level with 9 or more ranks in Perform (acting) can have his marionette be a scholar. A marionette scholar can use Bardic Knowledge with a bonus of 1/2 Burattinaio levels + Burattinaio's charisma modifier + marionette's charisma modifier.

Priest (Sp): A Burattinaio at 9th level with 12 or more ranks in Perform (acting) can have his marionette be a priest. A marionette priest can use the Cure Serious Wounds spell as a spell-like ability at will with its caster level equal to 1/2 Burattinaio levels + Burattinaio's charisma modifier + marionette's charisma modifier.

Oracle (Sp): A Burattinaio at 12th level with 15 or more ranks in Perform (acting) can have his marionette be an oracle. A marionette oracle can use the Prying Eyes spell as a spell-like ability at will with its caster level equal to 1/2 Burattinaio levels + Burattinaio's charisma modifier + marionette's charisma modifier.

Monarch (Sp): A Burattinaio at 15th level with 18 or more ranks in Perform (acting) can have his marionette be a monarch. A marionette monarch can use the Dominate Person and Charm spells as spell-like abilities at will with its caster level equal to 1/2 Burattinaio levels + Burattinaio's charisma modifier + marionette's charisma modifier.

Throw Voice (Su): At 3rd level, the Burattinaio can throw his voice so that it appears that his marionette is speaking. His marionette is now permanently affected by the Ventriloquism spell.

Dancing Fingers (Ex): At 4th level and every 4 levels beyond, the Burattinaio is skilled enough to control another marionette. He adds one extra marionette to the amount of marionettes he can control.

Change Personalities (Ex): At 7th level, the Burattinaio can add a personality when portraying a role for his marionette. The marionette's personality simply gives it more traits for its role and gives it depth. At 16th level, the marionette is allowed to have two different personalities.

Melancholic (Su): The marionette has a history that it just wants to forget. The marionette produces an aura of tragedy that stretches for 10ft. + 5ft./charisma bonus from it. Any opponent attempting to attack the marionette, its Burattinaio, or its allies, must take a -2 circumstance penalty to its attack and damage roll.

Sanguine (Su): The marionette tries its best to stay cheerful and spread its optimism. The marionette provides an aura of optimism that stretches for 10ft. + 5ft./charisma bonus from it. His allies gain a +2 competence bonus on their attack rolls and are immune to mind-affecting spells and abilities.

Choleric (Ex): The marionette is very passionate and has rage issues. The marionette can add +2 to his damage roll by taking 3 points of damage. He can take a total of +10 to his damage roll for 15 points of damage. His base attack bonus also upgrades to the equivalent of a rogue.

Phlegmatic (Ex): The marionette calms down, being stoic and understanding. The marionette gains a +2 insight bonus to one of his ability scores. It is unable to be targeted for an attack or spell, nor can it attack anything. This does not prevent him from taking damage from area spells or traps.

Supine (Su): The marionette remains submissive and complacent, essentially becoming a doormat. The marionette gains a +4 competence bonus on its Diplomacy checks. It can also absorb damage taken by an ally that it can see. If an ally takes damage of any kind, the marionette can instead take the hit. This ability, if used, overrules the ability granted by a Phlegmatic personality for that specific amount of damage.

Sudden Withdrawal (Ex): At 11th level, the Burattinaio can, as a full-round action, tug on his strings and pull one marionette to a square adjacent to him. The marionette is pulled in a straight line, so obstacles like walls or furniture prevent the Burattinaio from performing this. If the marionette flies into any square occupied by a creature, the creature must make a Reflex save of 15 or take 2d6 bludgeoning damage. The marionette cannot occupy an occupied space. If the marionette reaches an occupied space, it is forced into a random direction (rolled via a d8 similar to a thrown weapon) and takes 1d6 bludgeoning damage.

Mannequin: At 13th level, the Burattinaio decides to go for a more realistic type of portrayal and begins to use mannequins. Mannequins are similar to a marionette, though they do differ in many ways. First off, a mannequin now has a hit dice of d6 and is not limited to the hit point growth of the Burattinaio. The mannequin also gains the same ability scores as the Burattinaio plus his charisma bonus. The mannequin is considered a medium creature and, while it is receiving a role, provides the Burattinaio with cover as a tower shield. The mannequin, when being modified for its role, can take two roles and three personalities. When the Burattinaio uses Sudden Withdrawal, the damage that the mannequin would do when moving through an occupied square increases to 2d6 bludgeoning damage.

Unfortunately, the mannequin counts as two mannequins for the purpose of the Burattinaio's ability to control. If a mannequin were to be destroyed, it would take three hours to create another with tools or three days without. The number of mannequins the Burattinaio can have is equal to half of his charisma modifier, but he must have at least one mannequin.

Quick Fix (Ex): At 14th level, a Burattinaio's Portray Roles ability no longer leaves him helpless.

Collapse (Su): Just by tugging on his strings, a 16th level Burattinaio can cause his marionette to break apart into a pile of wooden limbs. Doing this is a free action on his turn. When the marionette collapses, the Burattinaio can perform a Sudden Withdrawal and Portray Roles in the same turn as a full-round action. Since the marionette is in pieces, the Sudden Withdrawal wound not be obstructed by walls or furniture. If he chooses not to, the marionette remains a pile of wooden limbs in which the Burattinaio can reassemble as a free action on his turn. The marionette gains Damage Reduction 5/slashing. If the marionette were to be set on fire, it would take 10 points of damage per round instead of the normal 3 points of damage per round.

Spectacular Demise (Su): At 18th level, the death scene of a mannequin is enhanced by the Burattinaio. After a role has been given to a marionette, the Burattinaio can choose to detonate his marionette when it is destroyed. Centered on the marionette, the explosion caused has a radius of 5ft. The explosion depends on the personalities given to the marionette. A marionette with multiple personalities will cause an explosion with all the types of damage caused by the personalities.

Tearjerker (Su): A melancholic marionette dies gracefully. A Tearjerker causes 7d6 of cold damage. Those hit by the Tearjerker must make a Will save (DC = 15 + Burattinaio's charisma modifier + marionette's charisma modifier) or break into tears for one round, receiving -6 to its attack roll and -4 to its damage roll.

Rest in Peace (Su)": A sanguine marionette dies with a smile on its face. A Rest in Peace causes 7d6 electricity damage. If is allies are within 15ft. of it when it dies, they are affected by a Cure Critical Wounds spell with a caster level of 1/2 Burattinaio levels + Burattinaio's charisma modifier + marionette's charisma modifier.

Die Fighting (Su): A choleric marionette fights to the last breath. A Die Fighting causes 7d6 fire damage. The marionette's body goes flying, sending its body scattering and performing an attack at its highest base attack bonus on any enemy caught in the Die Fighting. The damage caused by the flying marionette is bludgeoning damage and uses a d6 for damage rolls.

Alas, Poor Marionette (Su): A phlegmatic marionette sees a pragmatic gift to give after death. An Alas, Poor Marionette causes 7d6 acid damage. Allies within 15ft. of the marionette receive an insight bonus of +6 to any ability they choose for a number of rounds equal to the Burattinaio's charisma modifier + the marionette's charisma modifier.

Adieu (Su): A supine marionette regretfully passes. An Adieu causes 7d4 force damage. Any creature hit by an Adieu must make a Will save (DC = 1/2 Burattinaio levels + Burattinaio's charisma modifier + marionette's charisma modifier) or skip their turn.



Epic Burattinaio[edit]

Table: The Epic Burattinaio

Hit Die: d6

Level Special
23rd Bonus Feat
24th Dancing Fingers +6 (Ex)
26th Bonus Feat
28th Dancing Fingers +7 (Ex)
29th Bonus Feat

6 + Int modifier skill points per level.



Bonus Feats: The epic gains a bonus feat (selected from the list of epic bonus feats) every levels after 20th.

Epic Bonus Feat List: .

Starting Package[edit]

Weapons: .

Skill Selection: Pick a number of skills equal to 4 + Int modifier.

Skill Ranks Ability Armor

Feat: .

Bonus Feats: .

Gear: .

Gold: .

Campaign Information[edit]

Playing a Burattinaio[edit]

Religion: The common Burattinai would have close to little to do with the local church, much less religion, although most religious Burattinai enjoy performing religious reenactments during a sermon. .

Other Classes: Mixing a Burattinaio with a Bard is more than likely to occur, as they share similar abilities without having to compete with each other. The Burattinaio's marionettes will make sure that the frontlines will not diminish while the Burattinaio himself stays a safe distance away, most likely mingling with the spellcasters. Wild classes, such as the Barbarian, and serious classes, like the Monk, will find the Burattinaio's antics to be endearing, but son exasperating.

Combat: Close-combat is the last resort for the Burattinaio as it prevents him from effectively using his marionettes. Since the Burattinaio must expend his actions for his marionettes, he will choose a relatively safe area to plant himself while his marionettes do his dirty work.

Advancement: Charisma-based classes are what appeal to the Burattinaio. Selecting the sorcerer will allow some far-distance casting while the bard will give the Burattinaio more options for support. However, the Burattinaio is more than likely to continue his own line of work.

Burattinaios in the World[edit]


Daily Life: simillar to bards.

Notables: .

Organizations: Usually they found in organizations that have bards.

NPC Reactions: simillar to bards.

Burattinaio Lore[edit]

Characters with ranks in Knowledge (local) can research Burattinai to learn more about them. When a character makes a skill check, read or paraphrase the following, including information from lower DCs.

Knowledge (local)
DC Result
5 Burattinai are performers who use puppets.
10 The Burattinaio's marionettes are surprisingly sturdy.
15 The Burattinaio can augment his marionettes to give them special properties.
20 Through theatrics and pyrotechnics, the Burattinaio's marionette is eventually equipped with a devastating finale.

Burattinaio in the Game[edit]

Burattinaio are generally nondiscriminatory fun-seekers looking to make a quick buck or increasing their fame through travel. With a sense of humor and flair for acting, the Burattinaio is at home with the easygoing crowd.

Adaptation: The marionettes don't have to just be made of wood. Maybe amateur smelters created an experimental soft metal alloy that melts easily. Perhaps a rather vile Burattinaio uses the bodies of his victims as a cruel mockery.

Sample Encounter: .

EL : .

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