Necromaster (3.5e Class)

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Some mages specialize in blasting or shapeshifting. Some others specialize in the control and creation of Deathless or Undead beings. A Necromaster takes this further and devote all their magical skill to the art of Necromancy. Strangely in the art of necromancy there are two methods of its use, Positive and Negative.

Making a Necromaster[edit]

Necromasters are generally very fragile spellcasters seldom getting close enough for melee. Instead they manipulate their minions into attacking in their name. They also act as a minor form of support, either strengthening your allies or weakening the opponents.

Abilities: The highest score of a Necromaster should be intelligence as their spellcasting requires it. Following that should be charisma as it determines the power of several of your abilities and at later stages is crucial for your health.

Races: Any race can become a Necromaster but Vithui are the most common as they have a strong link to Negative energy.

Alignment: A Necromaster can be of any alignment.

Starting Gold: 3d4×10 gp (75 gp).

Starting Age: "Complex".

Table: The Necromaster

Hit Die: d4

Level Base
Attack Bonus
Saving Throws Special Spells per Day
Fort Ref Will 0 1st 2nd 3rd 4th 5th 6th 7th 8th 9th
1st + 0 + 0 +0 +2 Bonus Feat, Energy Allegiance, Turn/Rebuke, Undying Minion 2 1
2nd +1 +0 +0 +3 Touch of the Grave 3 1
3rd +1 +1 +1 +3 4 1 0
4th +2 +1 +1 +4 Transcendent Form +1 5 2 1
5th +2 +1 +1 +4 Bonus Feat, Unnatural Aura 6 2 1 0
6th +3 +2 +2 +5 Lifeless Body DR 2 6 2 2 1
7th +3 +2 +2 +5 Ally to the Fallen 6 3 2 1 0
8th +4 +2 +2 +6 Eyes from Beyond the Veil, Transcendent Form +2 6 4 2 2 1 -
9th +4 +3 +3 +6 Bonus Feat, Lifeless Body DR 4 6 5 3 2 1 0
10th +5 +3 +3 +7 Otherworldly Body 6 6 3 2 2 1 -
11th +5 +3 +3 +7 Empowered Minions 6 6 4 3 2 1 0
12th +6/+1 +4 +4 +8 Lifeless Body DR 6, Transcendent Form +3 6 6 5 3 2 2 1
13th +6/+1 +4 +4 +8 Bonus Feat 6 6 6 4 3 2 1 0
14th +7/+2 +4 +4 +9 Timeless Body 6 6 6 5 3 2 2 1
15th +7/+2 +5 +5 +9 Lifeless Body DR 8 6 6 6 6 4 3 2 1 0
16th +8/+3 +5 +5 +10 Transcendent Form +4 6 6 6 6 5 3 2 2 1
17th +8/+3 +5 +5 +10 Bonus Feat 6 6 6 6 6 4 3 2 1 0
18th +9/+4 +6 +6 +11 Lifeless Body DR 10 6 6 6 6 6 5 3 2 2 1
19th +9/+4 +6 +6 +11 6 6 6 6 6 6 4 3 2 2
20th +10/+5 +6 +6 +12 Eternal Apotheosis, Lifeless Body DR 12, Transcendent Form +5 6 6 6 6 6 6 5 3 3 3

Class Skills (2 + Int modifier per level, ×4 at 1st level)
Bluff (Cha), Concentration (Con), Craft (Int), Decipher Script (Int), Intimidate (Cha), Knowledge (Arcana), Knowledge (Religion), Profession (Wis), and Spellcraft (Int).

Class Features[edit]

All of the following are class features of the Necromaster.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency: A Necromaster is proficient with all simple weapons and with one martial weapon of her choice. Her choice of martial weapon is made when the character takes her first level of dread necromancer and cannot be changed. Dread necromancers aren’t proficient any armor or shields.

Spells: A Necromaster casts arcane spells which are drawn from the necromaster spell list.

To learn, prepare, or cast a spell, the Necromaster must have an Intelligence score equal to at least 10 + the spell level. The Difficulty Class for a saving throw against a Necromaster’s spell is 10 + the spell level + the Necromaster’s Intelligence modifier.

Unlike other spellcasters, a Necromaster is not forced to only cast only a certain number of spells of each spell level per day.

Unlike a wizard or a cleric, a Necromaster need not prepare her spells in advance. She can cast any spell she knows at any time. She does not have to decide ahead of time which spells she’ll cast.

Bonus Feat: At 1st, 5th, 9th, 13th, and 17th level, a Necromaster gains a bonus feat. At each such opportunity, she can choose a Necromantic Feat, an item creation feat, or Spell Mastery. The Necromaster must still meet all prerequisites for a bonus feat, including caster level minimums.

These bonus feats are in addition to the feat that a character of any class gets from advancing levels. The necromaster is not limited to the categories of item creation feats, necromantic feats, or Spell Mastery when choosing these feats.

Energy Allegiance: Upon becoming a Necromaster you must choose what kind of necromancy you will specialize in. You may choose either Positive Necromancy or Negative Necromancy. This determines several class features and your spell list.

Turn or Rebuke (Su): A positive aligned Necromaster can turn or destroy undead creatures and rebuke or command Deathless. An negative aligned necromaster instead can turn or destroy deathless creatures and rebuke or command undead.

A Necromaster may attempt to turn undead or deathless a number of times per day equal to 3 + his Intelligence modifier. A Necromaster with 5 or more ranks in Knowledge (religion) gets a +2 bonus on turning checks against undead and deathless.

Undying Minion: A Necromaster can obtain an undying minion (see below). Doing so takes 24 hours and uses up magical materials that cost 100 gp. An Undying Minion is a Deathless or Undead made from a corpse and is unusually tough and intelligent. The creature serves as a companion and servant.

The Necromaster chooses the kind of Undying Minion he gets. As the Necromaster advances in level, his Undying Minion also increases in power.

If the Undying Minion dies or is dismissed by the Necromaster, the Necromaster must attempt a DC 15 Fortitude saving throw. Failure means he loses 50 experience points per Necromaster level; success reduces the loss to one-half that amount. However, a Necromaster's experience point total can never go below 0 as the result of a Undying Minion's demise or dismissal. A slain or dismissed Undying Minion cannot be replaced for a year and day. A slain Undying Minion can be raised from the dead by casting an Animate Dead (If Undead) or Raise Deathless (If Deathless) spell.

Touch of the Grave (Su): As of second level a Necromaster can channel his attuned energy through his limbs and discharge it into others. As a standard action the Necromaster can make a touch attack. If this attack succeeds in hitting it deals either postive (if postive aligned) or negative (if negative aligned) energy damage. This attack deals xd4 points of damage, where the x is equal to a quarter of your Necromaster Level (minimum 1d4).

This ability can be used once every 1d8 turns.

Transcendent Form (Su): Manipulating the energies which seperate the living from the dead, a Necromaster can protect himself from physical attacks. At 4th level a Necromaster gains a +1 deflection bonus to Armor class. At 8th level and every four levels afterwards this bonus increases by +1.

Unnatural Aura (Su): As of 5th level animals do not willingly approach within 30 feet of a Necromaster, unless a master makes a DC 25 Handle Animal, Ride, or wild empathy check.

In addition the Necromaster gains +3 untyped bonus on intimidation checks, as her aura unnerves creatures other than animals.

Lifeless Body (Su): Once a Necromaster reaches level 6 the energy which she commands automatically flows through her without thought, repairing wounds as they are made as a natural defense. At level six you gain 2 Damage Reduction which can be bypassed with Bludgeon or Magic. This damage reduction increases by two every three levels.

In addition once a Necromaster reaches level eighteen this damage reduction is bypassed by Bludgeon & Magic, instead of Bludgeon or Magic.

Ally to the Fallen (Ex): When a Necromaster of level 7 or above, casts a necromancy spell, undead allies within 60ft feet gain turn resistance and a bonus on saves equal to your Necromaster level for a number of rounds equal to your Necromaster level.

Eyes from Beyond the Veil (Su): A Necromaster of eighth level or above can see the life energy within the bodies of others. She is constantly under the effect of the Deathwatch spell.

Otherworldly Body (Ex): Once a Necromaster attains tenth level whenever she casts a Necromancy spell she becomes immune to ability damage, ability drain, energy drain, and negative levels. This effect lasts a number of rounds equal to your Necromaster level + Intelligence Modifier.

Empowered Minions (Su): When a Necromaster of level 11 or above, her created minons are empowered by mystical energy. Whenever she creates a deathless or undead, the creature created has a distortion bonus to Strength and Dexterity. The bonus is equal +1 per five levels of Necromaster.

Timeless Body (Su): After attaining 14th level, a Necromaster no longer takes ability score penalties for aging and cannot be magically aged. Any penalties she may have already incurred, however, remain in place.

In addition she gains a extra 20 years to her maximum age.

Bonuses still accrue, and the nercomaster still dies of old age when her time is up.

Eternal Apotheosis (Su): Upon reaching level twenty, a Necromaster starts to build up the energy within her body. This energy can be discharged once as a Full-Round action, upon which time the energy will change the Necromaster forever. When this ability is used the energy kills the Necromaster then immediately reanimates her as a powerful deathless or undead.

When this ability is used the Necromaster gain a template. A Positive Aligned Necromaster can select from the following templates:

A Negative Aligned Necromaster can select from the following templates:

Grimoire: A Necromaster doesn't have to prepare spells and instead must read from her grimoire with each spell to cast it. She cannot cast any spell not recorded in her grimoire. As such whenever she tries to cast a spell its casting time is increased slightly.

Orginal Casting Time New Casting Time
1 Standard Action 1 Round
1 Round 2 Rounds
1 Minute 2 Minutes
1 Free Action 1 Swift Action
1 Swift Action 1 Standard Action

A Necromaster begins play with a grimoire containing all 0-level Necromaster spells plus three 1st-level spells of your choice. For each point of Intelligence bonus the Necromaster has, the grimoire holds one additional 1st-level spell of your choice. At each new necromaster level, she gains two new spells of any spell level or levels that she can cast (based on her new Necromaster level) for her grimoire . At any time, a Necromaster can also add spells found in other necromaster’s grimoire to her own.

Undying Minion[edit]

An Undying Minion is a normal Deathless or undead that gains new powers when summoned to service by a Necromaster. It retains the appearance, Hit Dice, base attack bonus, base save bonuses, skills, and feats of the normal creature it once was. Only a normal, unmodified Deathless or Undead may become an Undying Minion.

An Undying Minion also grants special abilities to its master (a Necromaster), as given on the table below. These special abilities apply only when the master and Undying Minion are within 1 mile of each other.

Levels of different classes that are entitled to Undying Minion stack for the purpose of determining any Undying Minion abilities that depend on the master’s level.

Your choice of Undying Minion is dependent on your Energy Alignment. If you are aligned to positive energy you gain a Karmainian Fighter Shell. If you are aligned negative energy you gain a Karmainian Fighter Skeleton.

For all intents and purposes an Undying Minion counts as a Familiar.

Undying Minion Basics: Use the basic statistics for a creature of the Minion’s kind, but make the following changes:

Hit Dice: For the purpose of effects related to number of Hit Dice, use the master’s character level or the undying minions’s normal HD total, whichever is higher.

Familiar Ability Descriptions: All undying minions have special abilities (or impart abilities to their masters) depending on the master’s combined level in classes that grant undying minions, as shown on the table below. The abilities given on the table are cumulative.

Class Level
Armor Adj.
& Str Adj.
Int Special
1st-2nd +1 +0 3 Improved Evasion, Share Spells, Empathic Link
3rd-4th +2 +1 4 Deliver Touch Spells
5th-6th +3 +1 5 Speak with Master
7th-8th +4 +2 6
9th-10th +5 +2 7
11th-12th +6 +3 8 Spell Resistance
13th-14th +7 +3 9 Scry on Undying Minion
15th-16th +8 +4 10
17th-18th +9 +4 11
19th-20th +10 +5 12

Natural Armor Adj.: The number noted here is an improvement to the undying minion's existing natural armor bonus.

Int: The undying minion's Intelligence score.

Dex & Str Adj.: The number noted here is an improvement to the undying minion's existing Dexterity and Strength Scores.

Improved Evasion (Ex): When subjected to an attack that normally allows a Reflex saving throw for half damage, a undying minion takes no damage if it makes a successful saving throw and half damage even if the saving throw fails.

Share Spells: At the master’s option, he may have any spell (but not any spell-like ability) he casts on himself also affect his undying minion. The undying minion must be within 5 feet at the time of casting to receive the benefit.

If the spell or effect has a duration other than instantaneous, it stops affecting the undying minion if it moves farther than 5 feet away and will not affect the undying minion again even if it returns to the master before the duration expires. Additionally, the master may cast a spell with a target of “You” on his undying minion (as a touch range spell) instead of on himself.

A master and his undying minion can share spells even if the spells normally do not affect creatures of the undying minion’s type (Deathless or Undead).

Empathic Link (Su): The master has an empathic link with his undying minion out to a distance of up to 1 mile. The master cannot see through the undying minion's eyes, but they can communicate empathically. Because of the limited nature of the link, only general emotional content can be communicated.

Because of this empathic link, the master has the same connection to an item or place that his undying minion does.

Deliver Touch Spells (Su): If the master is 3rd level or higher, a familiar can deliver touch spells for him. If the master and the undying minion are in contact at the time the master casts a touch spell, he can designate his undying minion as the “toucher.” The undying minion can then deliver the touch spell just as the master could. As usual, if the master casts another spell before the touch is delivered, the touch spell dissipates.

Speak with Master (Ex): If the master is 5th level or higher, a undying minion and the master can communicate verbally as if they were using a common language. Other creatures do not understand the communication without magical help.

Spell Resistance (Ex): If the master is 11th level or higher, a undying minion gains spell resistance equal to the master’s level + 5. To affect the undying minion with a spell, another spellcaster must get a result on a caster level check (1d20 + caster level) that equals or exceeds the undying minion's spell resistance.

Scry on Undying Minion (Sp): If the master is 13th level or higher, he may scry on his undying minion (as if casting the scrying spell) once per day.

Undying Minions at Epic Level: Special abilities granted to an Undying Minion continue to grow as the level of its master increases beyond 20th, as shown on Table: Epic Undying Minion Special Abilities. Even though the table shows advancement only to 42nd level, that is not the limit. The patterns in the table continue infinitely. Undying Minions special abilities gained at less than 20th level also continue to improve.

Table: Epic Undying Minions Special Abilities
Class Level
Armor Adj.
Int Special
21st–22nd +11 16 Familiar Spell
23rd–24th +12 17
25th–26th +13 18
27th–28th +14 19
29th–30th +15 20
31st–32nd +16 21 Familiar Spell
33rd–34th +17 22
35th–36th +18 23
37th–38th +19 24
39th–40th +20 25
41st–42nd +21 26 Familiar Spell

Familiar Spell: The Undying Minions gains the benefit of the Familiar Spell epic feat for the spell its master chooses.



Epic Necromaster[edit]

Table: The Epic Necromaster

Hit Die: d4

Level Special
23rd Bonus Feat
26th Bonus Feat
29th Bonus Feat

2 + Int modifier skill points per level.

Spells: The necromaster’s caster level is equal to his class level. The necromaster’s number of spells per day does not increase after 20th level. Each time the necromaster achieves a new level, he learns two new spells of any spell levels that he can cast (according to his new level).

Undying Minion: The Necromaster undying minion continues to increase in power. Every two levels beyond 20th the minion’s natural armor and Intelligence each increase by +1. The minion's spell resistance is equal to the master’s class level + 5. At 21st level and again every ten levels higher than 21st, the minion gains the benefit of the Familiar Spell epic feat for a spell of its master’s choice.

Bonus Feats: The epic necromaster gains a bonus feat (selected from the list of epic wizard feats) every three levels after 20th.

Epic Wizard Bonus Feat List: Augmented Alchemy, Automatic Quicken Spell, Automatic Silent Spell, Automatic Still Spell, Combat Casting, Craft Epic Magic Arms and Armor, Craft Epic Rod, Craft Epic Staff, Craft Epic Wondrous Item, Efficient Item Creation, Enhance Spell, Epic Spell Focus, Epic Spell Penetration, Epic Spellcasting, Familiar Spell, Forge Epic Ring, Ignore Material Components, Improved Combat Casting, Improved Heighten Spell, Improved Metamagic, Improved Spell Capacity, Intensify Spell, Multispell, Permanent Emanation, Scribe Epic Scroll, Spell Focus, Spell Knowledge, Spell Mastery, Spell Penetration Spell Stowaway, Spell Opportunity, Spontaneous Spell, Tenacious Magic. In addition to the feats on this list, the necromanster may select any item creation feat, metamagic feat, or necromantic feat not listed here.

Murderer Necromaster Starting Package[edit]

Weapons: Scythe (2d4, crit x4, 10 lb., two-handed, slashing or piercing).

Light Crossbow (1d8, crit 19-20/x2, range inc. 80 ft., 4 lb., piercing).

Skill Selection: Pick a number of skills equal to 2 + Int modifier.

Skill Ranks Ability Armor
Spellcraft 4 Int
Concentration 4 Con
Knowledge (Arcana) 4 Int
Knowledge (Religion) 4 Int
Decipher Script 4 Int
Hide (cc) 2 Dex 0
Move Silently (cc) 2 Dex 0
Search (cc) 2 Int
Spot 2 Wis

Feat: Body Assemblage.

Bonus Feats: Scribe Scroll.

Energy Alligance: Negative Energy.

Grimoire: All 0-level spells, plus Chill Touch, Ray of Enfeeblement, and Summon Undying Servant I, plus one of these spells of your choice per point of intelligence bonus (if any); Cause Fear, Detect Undead, Hide from Undead, and Reaving Aura (Complete Mage).

Gear: Backpack with waterskin, one day's trail rations, bedroll, sack, and flint and steel. Ten candles, map case, three pages of parchment, ink, inkpen. Spell component pouch, Grimoire. Case with 10 crossbow bolts.

Gold: 3d6 gp.

Campaign Information[edit]

Playing a Necromaster[edit]

Religion: Many necromasters whorship deities with undead/deadless portfolio.

Other Classes: A Necromaster gets along with clerics and sorcerers who study the Necromancy school. Barbarians and fighters help protect the necromaster while he animates waves of undead/deadless. Should any of his teammates be slain, a necromaster wouldn't think twice about animating their corpse to use as fodder.

Combat: The typical role in combat for a Necromaster is artillery, magical support, or bestowed effects, as well as animating dead tissue for fodder.

Advancement: A Necromaster may multi-class as a Pale Master (PrC, LM), a True Necromancer (PrC, LM), with enough training a BlackGuard (PrC, DMG), wizard, sorcerer, or a cleric. Necromaster druids are not unknown.

Necromaster's in the World[edit]

What shall I create today? Perhaps a huge carpet of corpses.
—Matic, Human Necromaster

Daily Life: Most Necromasters reside in the necropolise of BoneClaw where they may work in peace, though it is illegal to control intelligent undead within the city. They will work as grave keepers with no troubles. Sometimes certain nobles will employ the services of necromasters. These more wealthy commonfolk could just need the employment of an undertaker, and more often than not, to either avenge or resurrect a loved one.

Notables: Matic, Human Necromaster. Matic was the first necromaster in history to successfully animate corpses with positive energy, as such he keeps his methods and arcane formula's secret and only trains a small number of students.

Organizations: .

NPC Reactions: .

Necromaster Lore[edit]

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

Knowledge (Arcana)
DC Result
5 .
10 .
15 .
20 .

Necromaster's in the Game[edit]

Adaptation: .

Sample Encounter: .

EL : .

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