Cyst Disciple (3.5e Prestige Class)
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|“||"See my children at prayer. How devout they are, my little ones..."||”|
Becoming a Cyst Disciple
Cyst Disciples are mostly not entirely in control of their faculties. They either worship the undead cyst within their flesh or see it as a gift from their god, and try to spread the "faith" to all they meet. Most Cyst Disciples are Clerics of death-gods, such as Nerull, but a few are Druids, seeing the Cyst as a manifestation of Nature's dark side- these Cyst Disciples are often also Blighters. There are also Favoured Soul Cyst Disciples and a few more martial Blackguard Disciples, as well as the twisted students of dark magic- Archivist Disciples. Arcane casters who specialise in Necrotic Cyst magic become Cyst Adepts instead.
Wisdom is the most important statistic for most Cyst Disciples, since it governs their spellcasting, followed by Charisma for their Turning abilities. Strength is useful for the touch attacks required to implant a cyst within another character.
|Feats:||Mother Cyst, Spell Focus: Necromancy.|
|Spellcasting:||Able to cast 3rd-level or higher Divine spells.|
|Domains:||Must be able to cast at least one spell of 3rd level or higher from Death, Undeath or Pestilence domains. For the purposes of casters without domains, they must know the spell or have it on their spell list for characters who do not learn spells separately.|
|Special:||Must have implanted a Necrotic Cyst in an enemy and either left them alive or created a Skulking Cyst from them.|
|1st||+0||+0||+0||+2||Cyst Sense, Rebuke Cyst||+1 level of existing divine spellcasting class|
|2nd||+1||+0||+0||+3||Children of the Cyst||+1 level of existing divine spellcasting class|
|3rd||+2||+1||+1||+3||Necrotic Vitality +1||+1 level of existing divine spellcasting class|
|4th||+3||+1||+1||+4||Cyst Empowerment||+1 level of existing divine spellcasting class|
|5th||+3||+1||+1||+4||+1 level of existing divine spellcasting class|
|6th||+4||+2||+2||+5||Necrotic Vitality +2||+1 level of existing divine spellcasting class|
|7th||+5||+2||+2||+5||+1 level of existing divine spellcasting class|
|8th||+6||+2||+2||+6||+1 level of existing divine spellcasting class|
|9th||+6||+3||+3||+6||Necrotic Vitality +3||+1 level of existing divine spellcasting class|
|10th||+7||+3||+3||+7||+1 level of existing divine spellcasting class|
Class Skills (2 + Int modifier per level)
|12th||Necrotic Vitality +4|
|15th||Necrotic Vitality +5|
|18th||Necrotic Vitality +6|
All of the following are class features of the Cyst Disciple.
Spellcasting: At each level, you gain new spells per day and an increase in caster level (and spells known, if applicable) as if you had also gained a level in a divine spellcasting class to which you belonged before adding the prestige class level. You do not, however, gain any other benefit a character of that class would have gained. If you had more than one divine spellcasting class before becoming a Cyst Disciple, you must decide to which class to add each level for the purpose of determining spells per day, caster level, and spells known.
Cyst Sense (Su): As your Cyst develops, it becomes sensitive to others nearby of its kind. You automatically detect the presence (although not the number or location) of any Necrotic Cysts, Skulking Cysts and Mother Cysts within 60 feet, and are aware of the types present. For example, if Kallen the Mad was within 30 feet of a Wizard with the Mother Cyst feat, two Fighters the Wizard had implanted with Necrotic Cysts, he would know that there were three cysts, and that some were Necrotic Cysts and others were Mother Cysts. This ability is always active.
Rebuke Cyst (Su): This ability functions exactly like the Rebuke Undead ability, but it only affects Skulking Cysts and creatures with a Necrotic Cyst. For the purpose of rebuking Cyst creatures, your levels in classes that grant the ability to Rebuke Undead stack with your levels of Cyst Disciple.
Children of the Cyst (Su): The Mother Cyst's name is not only referring to its part in creating more Cysts. As your understanding of its ways develops, you begin to feel a parental pride towards the Skulking Cysts you create; they, in turn, follow you and do your will, pleased to do the wishes of their parent.
Children of the Cyst allows you to control a number of Skulking Cysts equal to your Cyst Disciple level. When you gain a level, you do not immediately get a new Skulking Cyst follower- you must create one with Necrotic Burst, Necrotic Eruption, or Necrotic Termination. A cyst under your control will follow your orders, although they will not undertake obviously suicidal actions; if not given any orders, they will act as they please, but will try to stay within 120ft of you. If you create more cysts than you can control, they will not act under your control, but will not attack you.
This ability continues to advance at Epic levels.
Necrotic Vitality (Su): At 3rd level, you are energised by the necrotic power of the Cyst sleeping within your body. You gain a +1 on Fortitude saves against disease, poison and death effects, and on Concentration checks. This bonus increases to +2 at 6th level and +3 at 9th level. This ability continues to increase at Epic levels, becoming a +4 bonus at level 12 and increasing by one every three levels thereafter.
Cyst Empowerment (Su): a 4th-level Cyst Disciple gains the ability to expend one use of Rebuke Undead or Rebuke Cyst to create a burst of energy as a standard action that energises all nearby Cysts. Characters with the Mother Cyst feat and Skulking Cysts within 30ft (including the Cyst Disciple themself) gain a +1 Profane bonus on saves and temporary HP equal to Charisma bonus+class level for a number of rounds equal to the Cyst Disciple's Charisma modifier (min 1), while characters with a Necrotic Cyst must pass a Fortitude save (DC10+ class level+ Cyst Disciple's Cha modifier) or be Sickened for the same length of time.
If you lose your Mother Cyst for any reason, you may no longer use any class features of the Cyst Disciple class.
Playing a Cyst Disciple
Combat: Cyst Disciples prefer to have already placed Cysts in as many enemies as possible before the beginning of any battle. If they do not have such luck, they should use an army of Skulking Cysts to hold down their enemies, and (if possible) use Necrotically Cysted people as suicide bombers with Necrotic Eruption.
Resources: Cyst Disciples can expect aid from their minions, and from anyone they've Necrotic Dominated.
Cyst Disciples in the World
|“||Greetings, Chaplain Lewop, it is truly an honor to shake your hand. Wait... ...are you casting Necrotic Eruption?||”|
Cyst Disciples have a tendency to establish theirselves in towns, where they can cause the most havoc.
NPC Reactions: NPCs who are aware of the situation regard Cyst Disciples with the utmost disgust and fear. Good (as in clever) wielders of Cysts do not permit NPCs to be aware of the situation. NPCs who are not aware of the situation are easily manipulated into a fine sludge.
Cyst Disciple Lore
Characters with ranks in Knowledge (Religion) can research Cyst Disciples to learn more about them. When a character makes a skill check, read or paraphrase the following, including information from lower DCs.
|11||Cyst disciples wield the power of Cysts, which gives them much stronger spells that only work on people they've touched with Necrotic Cyst.|
|16||Cyst disciples are able to sense people with Cysts and rebuke them.|
|21||Cyst disciples can control and boost Skulking Cysts.|
|26||Cyst disciples are physically improved by their Mother Cyst.|