Grand Marionettist (3.5e Class)

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Grand Marionettist[edit]

The word marionettist is a very broad term meaning one who uses puppets in battle. Each marionettist has vastly different puppets engineered with their own killing mechanisms, poisons, and abilities. The Grand Marionettist is one who takes this style to a new level, capable of fitting impossibly complex mechanisms into tiny frames, spending months or years developing the most incurable poisons, and attaining feats of skill and dexterity that other puppeteers dream of. They don't bother with the typical drama most other users of puppets deal with. The Grand Marionettist is the core of a non-living, unstoppable killing force and he is out to get his wishes be it through cleverness or through force.

Also, the Grand Marionettist uses the technician variant rule.

Making a Grand Marionettist[edit]

Being a Grand Marionettist entails attaining a wide assortment of capabilities involving death dealing techniques. They are clever and dextrous characters that rival rogues in killing efficiency. But since they spend much of their time out of close-combat they usually are quite fragile and physically weak. Also, they are mostly limited to what their puppet can do so if an opponent figures out how to counter the puppet before the Grand Marionettist can defeat him the marionettist becomes easy to overcome.

Abilities: Intelligence and Dexterity are the most important abilities for any Grand Marionettist. He must be extremely clever to out-wit his opponents and very fast and dexterous to maneuver his puppets. Both attributes also matter greatly when creating and improving his puppets. While Constitution benefits all characters, it gives no additional help for a Grand Marionettist besides health. This is also true for Strength, Wisdom, and Charisma.

Races: Any puppeteer is limited by his number of hands so a race with more than two hands makes for a powerful Grand Marionettist at lower levels but all races tend to even out in power near the end. As for what race would most likely become a Grand Marionettist, they are masters of hiding in shadows while letting the puppets do the work so a stealthy or small race, such as Gnomes or Halflings, would be most likely but Humans and Elves are also viable.

Alignment: Any alignment suits a Grand Marionettist from the lawful good guardian to the neutral traveling mercenary to the chaotic evil psychopath killing people in the streets.

Starting Gold: 1d4×10 gp. Most of a Grand Marionettist's starting gold is spent putting together his first puppet.

Starting Age: Simple.

Table: The Grand Marionettist

Hit Die: d8

Level Base
Attack Bonus
Saving Throws Special Technique
Design Points
Fort Ref Will
1st +0 +0 +2 +0 1 3
2nd +1 +0 +3 +0 2 4
3rd +1 +1 +3 +1 3 5
4th +2 +1 +4 +1 5 6
5th +2 +1 +4 +1 7 8
6th +3 +2 +5 +2 9 9
7th +3 +2 +5 +2 12 10
8th +4 +2 +6 +2 15 11
9th +4 +3 +6 +3 18 12
10th +5 +3 +7 +3 22 14
11th +5 +3 +7 +3 26 15
12th +6/+1 +4 +8 +4 30 16
13th +6/+1 +4 +8 +4 35 17
14th +7/+2 +4 +9 +4 40 18
15th +7/+2 +5 +9 +5 45 20
16th +8/+3 +5 +10 +5 51 21
17th +8/+3 +5 +10 +5 57 22
18th +9/+4 +6 +11 +6 63 23
19th +9/+4 +6 +11 +6 70 24
20th +10/+5 +6 +12 +6 77 25

Class Skills (8 + Int modifier per level, ×4 at 1st level)
Appraise (Int), Balance (Dex), Bluff (Cha), Climb (Str), Craft (Int), Decipher Script (Int), Diplomacy (Cha), Disable Device (Int), Disguise (Cha), Escape Artist (Dex), Forgery (Int), Gather Information (Cha), Hide (Dex), Intimidate (Cha), Jump (Str), Knowledge (local) (Int), Listen (Wis), Move Silently (Dex), Open Lock (Dex), Perform (Cha), Profession (Wis), Search (Int), Sense Motive (Wis), Sleight of Hand (Dex), Spot (Wis), Swim (Str), Tumble (Dex), Use Magic Device (Cha), Use Rope (Dex).

Class Features[edit]

All of the following are class features of the Grand Marionettist.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency: A Grand Marionettist is proficient with all simple weapons and light armor, but not shields.

Technique Points/Day: A Grand Marionettist's ability to command his puppets is limited by the technique points he has available. His base daily allotment of technique points is given on Table: The Grand Marionettist. In addition, he receives bonus technique points per day if he has a high dexterity score (see Table: Ability Modifiers and Bonus Technique Points ). His race may also provide bonus technique points per day, as may certain feats and items.

Life Lines (Ex): A Grand Marionettist moves his puppets through invisible lines of energy. These lines cannot be sensed without a Detect Magic spell or some other like-wise ability. Once detected though, they can't be affected in anyway, only seen. As long as the lines are attached to a marionette it allows the Grand Marionettist to supply the puppet with move actions and standard actions. The Grand Marionettist must expend a move action to give a single puppet a move action and expend a standard action to give a single puppet a standard action.

Optionally the Grand Marionettist may expend a technique point to supply a move action or standard action to a single puppet rather than expend an action of his own. Each puppet may only be given up to two move actions per round but as many standard actions as attacks the puppeteer has with his base attack bonus.

Great Designer: A Grand Marionettist spends a lot of his time working on upgrading old marionettes, building new ones, or thinking up ideas for different mechanisms. The levels a Grand Marionettist achieves represent extensive work on these things and therefore enable the Grand Marionettist to advance his marionettes. Each level in the Grand Marionettist class grants him design points which are the limitation on how much the Grand Marionettist is capable of putting into a marionette he builds. See Table: The Grand Marionettist for how many design points are available at each level.

Craft Wondrous Item: The Grand Marionettist gains Craft Wondrous Item as a bonus feat at 1st level. This assists with the creation of his marionettes.

The Marionette: Each marionette is completely unique from most other marionettes and packed with incredibly deadly mechanisms. Below is the list of various building pieces the Grand Marionettist can use in his marionettes.

Body Parts Each body part may contain a certain number of internal mechanisms or redesigns. The typical shape of a marionette is a humanoid figure as big as the Grand Marionette. Any additional body parts such as a third arm or leg requires a certain number of design points to build on as well as material cost.
Torso: The torso can have many shapes from humanoid to insect-like. It may have one internal mechanism and one redesign.
Arms: Each arm may have one internal mechanism or one redesign.
Hands: Each hand may wield one weapon as well as have one internal mechanism or one redesign. It is proficient with the weapon it is originally meant to wield.
Legs: Each leg may have one internal mechanism or one redesign.
Feet: Each foot may have on internal mechanism or one redesign.
Head: Each head may have two internal mechanisms or redesigns or one of each.
Other Appendage: Other appendages include tails, stingers, or any other such object. Other appendages may have one internal mechanism and/or one redesign as allowed by the DM.
Internal Mechanisms: An internal mechanism is, as it sounds, a complex device built on the inside of a piece to use up any extra room. They are highly deadly and diverse, meant to surprise an opponent and be reusable. Each internal mechanism can cost up to 3 design points, also known as dp.
Firing Mechanism: A device that fires some type of projectile. The complexity of the device determines its firing range.
Rank 1: 30 ft., 10 gp
Rank 2: 45 ft., 45 gp
Rank 3: 60 ft., 150 gp
Gas Release: A device that sprays a noxious cloud out enveloping an area around the puppet.
Rank 1: 10ft. radius, 10 rounds of gas, 10 gp
Rank 2: 20 ft. radius, 15 rounds of gas, 45 gp
Rank 3: 30 ft. radius, 20 rounds of gas, 150 gp
Spell Store: Can permanently store a spell for use once per day. Must pay a spell-caster to imbue the spell.
Rank 1: Max spell level 2, 10 gp
Rank 2: Max spell level 4, 45 gp
Rank 3: Max spell level 6, 150 gp
Hidden Weapon: A device that stores a hidden weapon that can quickly be drawn out for use or put away as a swift action. If the weapon is used the same round it is drawn that attack gets +2 to hit.
Rank 1: Dagger or smaller, 10 gp
Rank 2: Crossbow or smaller, 45 gp
Rank 3: Polearm or smaller, 150 gp
Coup de Grace: A mechanism designed to render a target helpless and deliver a coup de grace.
Rank 2: Torso, must trap the target within the hollow torso and may deliver a coup de grace on the following round, 125 gp
Redesigns: A redesign is a change to the physical design of how the piece functions such as improving the material, creating a more durable or flexible connector, or even removing as many unnecessary internal parts as possible. Each redesign can cost up to 3 design points, also known as dp.
Improved Strength: Improves the strength of the mechanisms moving the marionette providing a bonus to strength.
Rank 1: +2, 15 gp
Rank 2: +4, 75 gp
Rank 3: +6, 200 gp
Inhuman Agility: Focuses on the ability of the marionette to make inhuman bends and angles providing a bonus to dexterity.
Rank 1: +2, 25 gp
Rank 2: +4, 100 gp
Rank 3: +6, 300 gp
Unnatural Speed: Few creatures match a marionette's speed as it deftly moves across the battlefield with its light weight. This redesign may only be built in feet and legs.
Rank 1: +5' to move speed, 50 gp
Rank 2: +10' to move speed, 125 gp
Rank 3: +15' to move speed, 275 gp
Hardened Material: Researches in ways to harden the material of the marionette provide damage resistance.
Rank 3: Damage Reduction 1/bludgeoning, piercing, and force, 200 gp

Ex-Grand Marionettists[edit]


Epic Grand Marionettist[edit]

Table: The Epic

Hit Die: d

Level Special
+ 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: .

Grand Marionettist 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 Grand Marionettist[edit]

Religion: .

Other Classes: .

Combat: .

Advancement: .

Grand Marionettists in the World[edit]

-Above all creations, there is a genius who pulls the strings-
—-Nibs, tinker gnome and Grand marionettist-

Daily Life: .

Notables: .

Organizations: .

NPC Reactions: .

Grand Marionettist Lore[edit]

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

DC Result
5 .
10 .
15 .
20 .

Grand Marionettists in the Game[edit]

Adaptation: .

Sample Encounter: .

EL : .

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