Master of the Familiar (3.5e Prestige Class)

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A fighter/mage/Master of the Familiar and her imp familiar.

Master of the Familiar[edit]

For most arcane casters, a familiar is only an occasionally useful tool -- or, at worst, a liability. Others, however, embrace and strengthen the bond between master and familiar, gaining thereby incredibly powerful companions.


Skills: Knowledge (arcana) 8 ranks, Spellcraft 5 ranks, Handle Animal 4 ranks.

Spells: Must be able to cast 3rd level arcane spells.

Class Abilities[edit]

Hit Die: d4
Table: Master of the Familiar
Level Base
Attack Bonus
Special Spells per Day
1. +0 +0 +0 +2 Augmented familiar +1 existing arcane
2. +1 +0 +0 +3 Widened link, Amplify spell +1  
3. +1 +1 +1 +3 Linked mind +1 existing arcane
4. +2 +1 +1 +4 Perfect link, Amplify spell +2  
5. +2 +1 +1 +4 Lesser familiar spell +1 existing arcane

Class Skills (2 + Int modifier per level)
Concentration (Con), Craft (Int), Handle Animal (Cha), Heal (Wis), Knowledge (arcana) (Int), Knowledge (nature) (Int), Profession (Wis), Spellcraft (Int), and Use Magic Device (Cha).

Class Features[edit]

All the following are class features of the Master of the Familiar:

  • Augmented familiar: A master of the familiar can obtain a familiar in exactly the same manner as a sorcerer can; see the sorcerer description and the accompanying information for details. A character with more than one class that grants a familiar may have only one familiar at a time, but the levels in each of those classes stack for the purpose of determining any familiar abilities that depend on the master's level. An augmented familiar is more powerful than a regular familiar. In addition to the regular familiar special abilities, it possesses the special qualities Skillful Creature, Mettle, and Arcane Skin. It also gains bonuses similar to a druid's animal companion.
    • Skillful Creature (Ex): An augmented familiar gains a bonus equal to its master's class level on skill checks with any skill listed in the base creature's description.
    • Mettle (Ex): If an augmented familiar makes a successful Will or Fortitude saving throw that would normally reduce a spell's effect, it suffers no effect from the spell at all. Only those spells with a Saving Throw entry of "Will partial," "Fortitude half," or similar entries can be negated through this ability.
    • Arcane Skin (Ex): An augmented familiar possesses resistance to energy equal to half its natural armor bonus against all energy types (acid, cold, fire, electricity, and sonic). This resistance does not stack with any other energy resistances, including those inherent to its base creature (if any).
    • Animal Companion bonuses:An augmented familiar increases in power much like the animal companion of a druid. An augmented familiar advances according to the same table as a druid's animal companion, using twice its master's class level as an effective druid level (levels in a class that grants Summon Familiar instead of Augmented Familiar do not count toward increasing effective druid level). If the master possesses effective druid levels for an animal companion from any other sources, those levels may be added to the master's effective druid level for his augmented familiar instead of an animal companion. Effective druid levels granted by the master of the familiar class can never be applied to an actual animal companion. Augmented familiars differ from normal animal companions in a number of ways:
      • Bonus HD: Though a familiar is considered a magical beast, the bonus hit dice gained through augment familiar are gained as the familiar's original type (usually animal). An augmented familiar has a hit point total equal to that calculated from its own hit dice, or one half its master's hit points (whichever is greater). Similarly, its effective Hit Dice total for purposes of effects is equal to either its own or its master's, whichever is greater. Additionally, its base attack bonus and base saves increase, it gains skill points, and it may be eligible for feats and ability score improvements. Treat any skill listed in the base creature's description, plus any skills in which its master possesses at least 1 full rank, as class skills for the familiar. Remember that a familiar uses either its own or its master's base attack bonus, base saves, and skill ranks, whichever is better. A familiar's size never increases as a result of these increased HD.
      • Natural Armor Adj.: The natural armor increase provided by effective druid levels stacks with the natural armor increase provided by the normal summon familiar ability.
      • Bonus Tricks: As a creature with an intelligence greater than 2, a familiar does not learn tricks at all (but likely can perform as well or better than any regular animal in most situations).
      • Link: Since a familiar is an intelligent creature, Handle Animal and wild empathy do not apply.
      • Str/Dex Adj., Devotion, and Multiattack: Apply normally, as described for a normal animal companion.
      • Share Spells, Evasion, and Improved Evasion: Abilities gained by virtue of being a familiar overlap these abilities.
  • Widened link (Su): At 2nd level, the link between a master and his familiar begins to improve. The distance at which a master and familiar may continue to share spells improves by 5 ft. per level. (At 2nd level, a familiar may be as far as 15 ft. from its master and still share a spell. At 5th level, it may be up to 30 ft. away.)
  • Amplify spell (Su): The mere presence of his familiar increases a master's spellcasting ability. At 2nd level, as long as his familiar is within range of the Widened Link (above), all spells cast by a master of the familiar have their effective caster level and save DCs increased by +1. This bonus increases to +2 at 4th level.
  • Linked mind: (Su) A 3rd level master and his familiar have developed a link so strong that their minds are almost one. The Empathic link ability is no longer limited to 1 mile and even functions across different planes. Linked mind also enhances several other familiar abilities which may or may not be possessed by the pair when linked mind is gained. If any of these other abilities are later gained, its associated linked mind ability is gained also.
    • Telepathy (Su): A familiar with the Speak with master special ability gains the ability to communicate telepathically with its master as long as the two are within the range of widened link (above). As with a familiar's empathic link, communication may still be limited by the intelligence of the familiar.
    • Shared senses (Su): As long as he and his familiar are on the same plane, a master with the scry on familiar special ability may experience the world through his familiar's senses. As long as the master maintains concentration (up to 1 minute per caster level, as scry), he sees, hears, and otherwise senses everything the familiar does (including any senses the familiar possesses that the master normally does not, such as blindsense). The master does not assume direct control over the familiar. Using this ability dulls the master's reactions to his own environment, however; while sharing senses with his familiar, he is considered flat-footed and takes a -10 penalty on skill checks made as reactions. This ability may be used once per day, and is in addition to the daily use of scry on familiar.
  • Perfect link (Su): The link forged by a master of the familiar is significantly stronger than a typical link. At 4th level, as long as the familiar is within the range determined by widened link (above), a master can choose to have a spell originate from the familiar instead of himself. In addition to the more obvious applications to spell ranges and line of sight/effect, this means that the master may cast a touch spell to be delivered by the familiar even while not in actual contact with the familiar.
  • Lesser familiar spell (Sp): Upon gaining 5th level, a master of the familiar chooses one spell from each spell level of 3rd and below from any of his arcane spell lists (whether he is capable of casting it or not). His familiar can now use each of these spells once per day as a spell-like ability at a caster level equal to half its master's normal caster level. Spells that require a material component with a cost greater than 1 gp, a focus of any kind, or an XP cost may not be chosen for this ability.

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