Disciple of Blood (3.5e Prestige Class)
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Disciple of Blood
|“||Bleed for me.||”|
|—Kantor, Vampire Disciple of Blood, Yellow Pines Massacre|
Disciples of Blood are powerful casters, exchanging blood for a number of ways to augment their casting and general combat.
Becoming a Disciple of Blood
Evil casters, divine and arcane, may be drawn to the power this path brings. Those willing to sacrifice their blood and soul for mortal power will find few alternatives better than becoming a Disciple.
|Spellcasting:||Must be able to cast 3rd level spells.|
|Special:||Must perform a blood sacrifice to a patron fiend, of the blood of an innocent tortured to death and of their own.|
|2nd||+||+||+||+||Tears of Blood +1||+1 to existing casting class|
|3rd||+||+||+||+||Blood's Boon||+1 to existing casting class|
|4th||+||+||+||+||Tears of Blood +2||+1 to existing casting class|
|5th||+||+||+||+||Crimson Channeling||+1 to existing casting class|
|6th||+||+||+||+||Tears of Blood +3||+1 to existing casting class|- class="odd"||7th||+||+||+||+||Blood's Boon||+1 to existing casting class|
|8th||+||+||+||+||Tears of Blood +4||+1 to existing casting class|
|9th||+||+||+||+||Crimson Channeling||+1 to existing casting class|
|10th||+||+||+||+||Avatar of Blood, Tears of Blood +5||+1 to existing casting class|
Class Skills (<-skill points-> + Int modifier per level)
The abilities of a Disciple of Blood come from his frequent blood sacrifice, and enhance his casting and combat ability. Slowly, a Disciple of Blood descends to become more fiendish than mortal, and as he does so, he gains immense power. All of the following are class features of the Disciple of Blood.
Spellcasting: At each level after the first, 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 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 spellcasting class before becoming a Disciple of Blood, you must decide to which class to add each level for the purpose of determining spells per day, caster level, and spells known.
Arcane Offering (Su): At first level, a Disciple of Blood learns the rudimentary method of sacrificing to his patron for arcane power. This method allows him to augment his spells, applying a metamagic without increasing the spell's cost, but drains him of blood, dealing 1 constitution damage per spell level payed for. A caster without a constitution score can still use this ability, but instead takes 1 damage per hit die per two constitution damage he would have taken.
Tears of Blood (Su): At each even level, a Disciple of Blood grows more fiendish, reinforcing his body and mind. He gains a profane bonus to constitution and a chosen mental statistic equal to his Tears of Blood bonus, and blindsight with range 10 feet per point of bonus, but taking a -2 penalty to spot checks for each point of bonus as his eyes begin turning bloodshot and red. If the caster lacks a constitution score, the caster gains +1 hit point per hit die at 4th and 8th level. At 10th level, his eyes begin permanently and continuously crying tears of blood, making him blind but giving him 100 foot blindsight and the ability to read a page simply by smearing a tear onto text, a swift action that functions much like Scholar's Touch but allows activation of magical texts as if the text was read.
Blood's Boon (Su): Upon reaching 3rd and 7th level, a Disciple of Blood gains a boon for their loyalty. Activating this boon lasts 24 hours and causes 2 points of Constitution burn, returning when the boon deactivates. A caster without a constitution score can still use this ability, but instead takes 1 damage per hit die. The following are available as boons to a Disciple of Blood:
Crimson Wings (Su): The Disciple of Blood grows dark red, deeply veined, demonic wings, granting him a fly speed of 30 feet (Good).
Fiendish Servant (Su): The Disciple of Blood gains a fiendish animal to serve him, identical to a Blackguard's Fiendish Servant of his level.
Heart of Darkness (Su): The Disciple of Blood's heart grows dark and fills with unholy energy, giving him 50% fortification and causing negative energy to heal him, while positive energy harms him.
Bonemail (Su): The Disciple of Blood's bones grow out, becoming part exoskeleton and granting him 2+(1/2 class level) as an armor bonus to AC. Additionally, he gains a claw attack dealing 1d4 damage for a medium character, and anything he claws takes an additional 2d6+(class level) negative energy damage.
Crimson Channeling (Su): As he progresses, a Disciple of Blood learns a more advanced technique for infusing his spells with blood. At 5th level, he may replace any damage from a spell with negative energy, much like the Energy Substitution metamagic feat. At 9th level, he learns to add this damage rather than replace existing damage, much like the Energy Admixture metamagic feat. However, this second ability costs him in blood, dealing damage equal to the spell level squared to him.
Ex-Disciples of Blood
Disciples of Blood who fall out of their patron's favor lose all abilities granted by them, which includes casting and class abilities. Furthermore, they may find themselves hunted by servants of their patron for betraying their cause.
Playing a Disciple of Blood
Combat: Disciples of Blood in combat are much like other casters, with a few distinctions. Disciples tend to be slightly more durable than other arcane casters with their improved hit die, constitution, and potential added defenses. However, as they become weaker as they cast, they tend to become less durable later on, but have significantly stronger spells.
Advancement: Typically, Disciples of Blood continue in their original path after mastering their art.
Resources: Typically, a Disciple of Blood has less resources than an average caster, due to most people treating them with suspicion, and rightfully so. However, they have a resource most do not in their patron, who can be called for assistance - for a suitable price.
<-pluralized class name-> in the Game
Disciples of Blood generally come as the stereotypical villainous caster, willing to kill for their own power. However, they might fit in as a PC in a evil campaign.
Adaptation: Giving any eligible villain levels in Disciple of Blood will add a layer of flavor and danger to any caster-boss. Take care in not utterly destroying players with metamagic and by the same thought, accidentally firing off a absurdly costly spell that is promptly disrupted and having your final encounter end in a single round. Similarly, don't let your players blast their way through a campaign or get offed by a single well-placed crossbow bolt through the neck after a barrage of augmented casting.
Sample Encounter: Kantor is a vampiric sorcerer with a frightening history. After single-handedly annihilating a town of several thousand and sacrificing them to an unknown patron, he has gained infamy and wealth while putting his face on every bounty board in the country. Killing him would be a rather profitable excursion, if successful, as well as saving many from his wrath.
Kantor resides in a pretty stereotypical vampiric mansion, but extends an open invitation to any to challengers. To any walking through, his walls seem unguarded, except by the vampire himself. Kantor will welcome the party to make the first move when they reach the entryway, effectively putting himself last in the initiative count.
However, assuming the party is reasonably powerful, he will have scryed them ahead of time and prepared for the battle, including giving himself 9d6 (31, for a total of 118) temporary hitpoints via Empowered Vampiric Touch and casting any relevant defense buffs.
If the party reduces him to his gaseous form, he will flee through vents hidden all throughout the mansion. Additionally, several traps will become active, Dispelling (CL 10) the first spell cast, and casting a 9d6 damage Vampiric Touch (DC 20 to spot, 28 to disable) if anyone attempts to leave through a door or window.
His treasury is hidden beneath the floorboards, encased in inch thick steel and lead with a few perforations and further warded with a casting of 9d6 damage Vampiric Touch upon the first one to touch the metal. Within is several thousand (3d4*1000) gold worth of various art and jewels, along with an equal value of magical equipment. His bounty is worth an additional 10000 gold and if he is destroyed, the party can take the magical equipment he has on hand as well.
Below the treasury is his coffin, protected by three further layers of inch thick steel with staggered perforation and lead, each layer containing another Vampiric Touch. The party may notice perforations in the bottom of the treasury, with a DC 25 spot check, though if they reach it within five rounds they will notice the gaseous form escaping downwards.
However, a successful Vampiric Touch immediately gives Kantor half the temporary hit points he would have if he casted it, and allows him to immediately begin fast healing at a rate of 5 hit points per round. Thus, unless the party can avoid triggering the Vampiric Touch traps, he will quickly regain health before fighting again.