Gentle Monk (3.5e Prestige Class)
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|He hit me five times, one hand after another stabbing at my shoulders, my stomach, my chest. It hurt, but not...physically. And then, I felt the tingle of magic in my body, but, rather than the warm strength it normally is, it was an angry fizz or buzz. He looked at me with his pale eyes, and said that my magic would return with rest, that I should stay out of the rest of the battle, and then ran off to go help his ally in the heavy armor.
|—Teriel, elf cleric
Becoming a Gentle Monk
The Gentle Monks are a feared order. The irony of their name freezes the spines of martial artists and spellcasters who know of them. You see, Gentle Monks do not fight by breaking bones or bruising muscle, but by attacking the key points of the body itself. Their Gentle Strike style involves injecting their body's energy with each precise strike, disrupting the life force of their opponent. This technique is very flexible, letting them choose whether to slay or not. Furthermore, creatures with spellcasting or natural magic are susceptible to this technique, as it can be adapted to shut off their access to the magic forces--temporarily.
|Base Attack Bonus:
|Monk Training, White Eye, Gentle Strike
|Closing the Soul
Class Skills (4 + Int modifier per level)
All of the following are class features of the Gentle Monk.
Monk Training (Ex): The Gentle Monk continues honing his Monk skills at evading attacks. Levels of Gentle Monk stack with levels of Monk classes leve counts as a level of monk for the purposes of determining your Unarmed Strike damage, your Flurry of Blows, AC Bonus, and your Fast Movement.
The White Eye (Su): After much meditation and concentration, the Gentle Monk has earned the ability to see the very flows of energy that surround him--literally. When this is activated, he gains the following benefits:
- He gains Lifesight with a range of 30 feet per character level (if one cannot find the rules, treat as being able to see the glowing shapes of living creatures despite intervening conditions, such as walls, rain, darkness, etc.)
- He gains 360-degree vision when the White Eye is activated, preventing him from being flanked.
- He is treated as having Detect Magic active while Lifesight is.
Activating and deactivating this ability is a standard action.
Gentle Strike (Su): The Gentle Monk does not crudely beat his opponents to death--his attacks target the inner workings of their bodies.
First, when using his Constitution-reducing Fighting Style, his Slam or unarmed attacks may, at his option, reduce Strength or Dexterity instead.
Second, he may forego damage to inflict a 10% magic failure chance per successful hit. This affects both arcane and divine spellcasting, and also interferes with the activation of spell-like and supernatural abilities.
- Example: Neji-Jiji, human Gentle Monk, is fighting a cleric who has used Shield of Faith upon himself. Neji-Jiji attacks and successfully hits twice, and foregoes his damage rolls to inflict 20% spellcasting failure chance on the Cleric's future casting, but the Cleric's Shield of Faith is still working.
- Days later, Neji-Jiji has accidentally stumbled upon a grove protected by a Unicorn. He seeks to avoid hurting the creature, and so uses Gentle Strike during a full attack. He hits four times, and foregoes his damage roll to inflict a 40% chance of magic failure upon the Unicorn. The Unicorn finds using its spell-like abilities subject to a 40% failure chance, but its constantly-active magic circle against evil is not interfered with.
Gentle Strike may only be used when White Eye is active, and does not affect creatures with no Constitution score.
Chakra Disruption (Su): At 2nd level, the Gentle Monk learns to make discord in the ki of his opponent's body. As a standard action, he may make a touch attack which nauseates or exhausts his opponent (his option) if they fail a Fortitude save (DC 10 + 1/2 character level + Wis bonus). If the target passes the Fortitude save, they are instead sickened or fatigued (as appropriate). The condition lasts for a number of rounds equal to the Gentle Monk's Wisdom modifier. Chakra Disruption may only be used when the White Eye is active.
Heavenly Sphere (Su): At 3rd level, By emitting his ki from all over his body and spinning rapidly, the Gentle Monk may create a 10-foot radius sphere, centered on him, as a swift or immediate action.
Anyone (apart from the Gentle Monk) within the radius takes Xd8 Force damage (X equal to Wisdom modifier), and is pushed out to the edge of the sphere. This is useful when surrounded, but the more important function is that the force of the spinning ki disrupts physical attacks and magical effects which come in contact with it.
It blocks one attack, and it stops any targeted or area-of-effect spell from affecting the Gentle Monk, and blocks Line effects. It also disrupts a full attack which happens within its radius, pushing the attacker back. He may do this a number of times a day equal to his Wisdom Modifier. Because of the strain involved in doing it, it only lasts for an instant--long enough to negate one spell or attack.
Chakra Shock (Su): At 4th level, the Gentle Monk can prepare for a hit with a readied action. Any creature which strikes him in melee is affected as if they had been hit by by the Gentle Strike or the Chakra Disruption effect.
Closing the Soul (Su): If the Gentle Monk performs a full attack with the Gentle Strike style and successfully hits at least four times, the target must make three Fortitude Saves (DC 10 + 1/2 Character Level + Wis Modifier), to avoid losing spellcasting, spell-like abilities, and supernatural abilities, respectively. A night's sleep (or equivalent) will restore the use of these abilities.
Playing a Gentle Monk
Combat: The Gentle Monk's preferred strategy is to use Gentle Strike to debilitate his opponents into helplessness. Their Gentle Strike also makes them extremely suited for taking on casters of all kinds.
Advancement: Monk is the most obvious choice, as this class is needed to become a Gentle Monk.
Resources: Gentle Monks are not an official organization, but recognize other practictioners of the Gentle Strike as allies, and may help out or join in.
Gentle Monk Lore
Characters with ranks in Heal or Knowledge (Religion) can research Gentle Monks to learn more about them. When a character makes a skill check, read or paraphrase the following, including information from lower DCs.
|A Gentle Monk may weaken your body with a strike, by targeted specific points and injecting their own energy into you.
|The Gentle Monks can see the forces of life and magic--and fight like they have eyes in the backs of their heads.
|A Gentle Monk can knock you on your ass with that blue spinning sphere they make--but keep trying; eventually, he won't be able to do it again.
|The Gentle Monks can close off your soul, disabling your magical abilities.