Dune Walker (3.5e Prestige Class)

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Dune Walker

When one thinks of deadly climates, the first thing that comes to mind might be the murky depths of the ocean, filled with water-behemoths frightening to behold; the heavy, oppressive rainforest, populated by savage brutes who would sooner attack than look at you; or the dizzying heights of a sky-bound castle, guarded by dragons and manned by fierce knights. The wise explorer knows, however, that this dangerous title falls, hands-down, to the desert.

Among the arid dunes and water-starved villages of the desert, a branch of warriors has persisted for as long as the sentient races have attempted to bend the climate to their will. They give themselves no name; for them, it is not an art or a fighting style, but a way of life. Less profound travelers know them as dune walkers.

Dune walkers differ from other adventurers in that they don't fight the harsh conditions of their adopted home - they embrace them. As they progress down the path of the desert-initiated, they slowly gain abilities that resonate with the desert's characteristics, culminating in an astounding ability to shift their bodies into a contigious mass of sand.


To qualify to become a dune walker, a character must fulfill all the following criteria:

  • Base Attack Bonus: +3
  • Feats: Child of the Desert, Lightning Reflexes, Improved Unarmed Strike
  • Skills: Concentration 8 ranks, Escape Artist 8 ranks, Knowledge (Arcana) 5 ranks
  • Special: Must have survived at least one week in the desert alone and with no supplies.

Table: Dune Walker
Hit Die: d8
Level Base Attack
1 +0 +2 +0 +0 Arid Resilience, Desert Arsenal
2 +1 +3 +0 +0 Sand Bolt
3 +2 +3 +1 +1 Damage Reduction 1/-
4 +3 +4 +1 +1 Sand Form
5 +3 +4 +1 +1 Stinging Slash
6 +4 +5 +2 +2 Damage Reduction 2/-
7 +5 +5 +2 +2 Sandstorm
8 +6 +6 +2 +2 Draw in Sand
9 +6 +6 +3 +3 Damage Reduction 3/-
10 +7 +7 +3 +3 Desert Ascension

Class Skills (4 + Int Modifier per level)
Balance, Climb, Concentration, Craft, Diplomacy, Escape Artist, Hide, Jump, Knowledge (Arcana), Knowledge (Religion), Listen, Move Silently, Profession, Sense Motive, Spot, Tumble.

Class Features

Proficiencies: The dune walker gains no additional weapon or armor proficiencies.

Arid Resilience (Ex): The 1st level dune walker has adapted to the desert environment, hardening themselves against it's harsh conditions. A dune walker can go a number of days equal to their class level without water before suffering any ill effects.

Desert Arsenal (Ex): At 1st level, the dune walker has begun his journey along the path to ascension, and trained himself to flourish with even the smallest of available supplies. In addition, he has gained a limited control over his body's composition. Dune walker class levels stack with monk levels to determine unarmed damage. If the character did not possess monk levels before taking the dune walker prestige class, treat him instead as a monk of his class level when determining unarmed damage. The dune walker may also briefly shift his hands and feet, giving them sharp edges or pointed spikes where none were before. As a swift action, he may alter his unarmed damage to deal either slashing or piercing damage rather than bludgeon damage. This alteration lasts a number of rounds equal to his class level.

Sand Bolt (Su): At 2nd level, the dune walker gains the ability to morph a small part of his body into sand and hurl it at an enemy. As part of an attack, he can make a ranged attack against any opponent within 30 feet. If the attack hits, it deals 1d4 points of bludgeon damage plus the dune walker's Strength modifier. The sand bolt threatens on a 20, and has a critical multiplier of 2. Every use of this ability deals 1 point of nonlethal damage to the dunewalker. The sand bolt counts as a special monk weapon, and can thus be used in a flurry of blows.

Damage Reduction (Ex): At 3rd, 6th, and 9th level the dune walker's connection with the desert deepens, as does his control over his body's composition. His body's density increases, granting him the indicated amount of damage reduction.

Sand Form (Su): At 4th level, the dune walker's control over his composition has increased tremendously. As a full-round action that provokes attacks of opportunity, he can convert his body into living sand, retaining his original shape but taking on the appearance of a contigious mass of roiling sand. While in sand form, the dune walker gains a number of benefits: he recieves a +2 increase to Strength, Dexterity, and Constitution, and his damage reduction increases by 1/-. The sand form lasts for a number of rounds equal to the dune walker's class level plus his newly modified Constitution modifier, upon which the dune walker reverts to his natural form and cannot reenter sand form for a number of minutes equal to the rounds he spent in it. During this time the dune walker is also considered fatigued.

Stinging Slash (Su): At 5th level, the dune walker has learned an even greater martial technique that duplicates feats of the desert. On his turn, his reach is considered 5 feet longer as he lengthens the distance between the grains in his limbs. While in sand form, his reach is always considered 5 feet long, even when it is not his turn.

Sandstorm (Su): At 7th level, the dune walker can unleash a flurry of a coriolis storm to damage his foes. As a full-round action that provokes attacks of opportunity he can release a 20 foot can of sand, dealing 5d6 points of slashing and piercing damage to any caught in its area as the sand slashes and stings exposed flesh (Reflex for half, DC 10 + class level + Constitution modifier). Each use of this ability deals 10 points of nonlethal damage to the dune walker.

Draw in Sand (Su): At 8th level, the dune walker can use the desert's resources to supplement his own. While in sand form and in contact with a seperate body of sand, the dune walker gains fast healing 1. Nonlethal damage is always healed first, followed by lethal damage. Alternatively, the dune walker can draw in sand and increase his size. He must absorb his current weight in sand to increase his size by one category, and can only ever increase his size by one category above normal. The dune walker can draw in a number of pounds of sand per round equal to 10 times his dunewalker class level, so how long it takes to increase his size may vary; sand drawn in in this fashion can be released at the same rate, bringing the character back to their normal weight and size. The total number of size increases that a dune walker can undergo can never exceed his base Constitution modifier.

Desert Ascension (Su): At 10th level, the dune walker has reached the pinnacle of his abilities. He can now spend as many rounds as he likes in his sand form, and is never considered fatigued upon leaving it. In addition, the bonuses granted by the sand form increase for a total of +4 to Strength, +4 to Dexterity, +4 to Constitution, and +2/- to his damage reduction.

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