Sniper (3.5e Class)

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Sniper[edit]

Anyone can pick up a bow and learn how to use one. Then there those who can actually use one with some degree of skill. But once in a generation there are those who aspire to have absolute mastery of these weapons and yet countless other ranged weapons. These are Snipers. They blend a mixture of sheer accuracy and a love of far reaches, and create a master of potent extreme ranged attacks. And these are what those rest aspire to become.

Making a Sniper[edit]

A Sniper shines best when they have a mid to short range engager like a Fighter or Barbarian, or even a Duskblade to provide distaction for her to make a well placed attack. One of her biggest strengths though, is the ability to deal massive damage in single turn and then disappear immediately after it only to show up shortly after in a completely different location to dish out more deadly strikes. Her major down fall is that like a rogue she has a very limited selection of armor she can wear while being able maximize her usefullness to the party, and as a result, is very squishy. So at all costs she must avoid enegaging in direct combat.

Abilities: Dexterity, Intelligence, and Wisdom. Dexterity for the obvious reason, and for defense since they typically wear light or no armor to keep their mobility up, and to ensure they act sooner in combat. Intelligence since they have wide array of skills to choose from, and for certain class features. Wisdom is a close third since perception is also a necessary aspect of ranged attackers and useful in scouting out the area, and to increase their resistances to mind altering effects. Constitution is always good, as it improves survivability. A minimum Strength of at least 10 so as to avoid penalties to attack with bows (their preferred weapon of choice), and a higher strength for those who intend on using thrown weapons or Mighty bows of any kind. Charisma is the least used since being close to your deader is usually a bad thing.

Races: Any, though usually Elves, Humans, and Halflings typically become Snipers.

Alignment: Any, though Snipers usually tend more towards law due to the rigid and structured focus of their training.

Starting Gold: 5d6×10 gp (175gp).

Starting Age: "Complex", "As wizard".

Table: The Sniper

Hit Die: d8

Level Base
Attack Bonus
Saving Throws Special Sniper's Focus Weapon Enhancement
Fort Ref Will Range Increment Threat Range Crit Multiplier
1st +1 +0 +2 +2 Sniper's Focus, Weapon Focus, Bonus Feat +10' x1 +0 +0
2nd +2 +0 +3 +3 Insightful Strike, Bonus Feat +20' x1 +0 +1
3rd +3 +1 +3 +3 +30' x2 +0 +1
4th +4 +1 +4 +4 Sniper's Grace +1, Uncanny Dodge, Weapon Specialization +40' x2 +0 +2
5th +5 +1 +4 +4 Wise Defense +50' x2 +1 +2
6th +6/+1 +2 +5 +5 Evasion, Bonus Feat +60' x3 +1 +3
7th +7/+2 +2 +5 +5 +70' x3 +1 +3
8th +8/+3 +2 +6 +6 Sniper's Grace +2, Improved Uncanny Dodge, Greater Weapon Focus, Ranged Weapon Mastery +80' x3 +1 +4
9th +9/+4 +3 +6 +6 +90' x4 +1 +4
10th +10/+5 +3 +7 +7 Bonus Feat +100' x4 +2 +5
11th +11/+6/+1 +3 +7 +7 +110' x4 +2 +5
12th +12/+7/+2 +4 +8 +8 Sniper's Grace +3 Greater Weapon Specialization +120' x5 +2 +6
13th +13/+8/+3 +4 +8 +8 +130' x5 +2 +6
14th +14/+9/+4 +4 +9 +9 Improved Evasion, Bonus Feat +140' x5 +2 +7
15th +15/+10/+5 +5 +9 +9 +150' x6 +3 +7
16th +16/+11/+6/+1 +5 +10 +10 Sniper's Grace +4 +160' x6 +3 +8
17th +17/+12/+7/+2 +5 +10 +10 +170' x6 +3 +8
18th +18/+13/+8/+3 +6 +11 +11 Weapon Supremacy, Bonus Feat +180' x7 +3 +9
19th +19/+14/+9/+4 +6 +11 +11 +190' x7 +3 +9
20th +20/+15/+10/+5 +6 +12 +12 Sniper's Grace +5 +200' x7 +4 +10

Class Skills (6 + Int modifier per level, ×4 at 1st level)
The Sniper's class skills (and key abilities for each) are as follows: are Balance (Dex), Climb (Str), Craft (Int), Escape Artist (Dex), Handle Animal (Cha), Hide (Dex), Jump (Str), Knowledge (Nature) (Int), Knowledge (Dungeoneering) (Int), Knowledge (Geography) (Int), Listen (Wis), Move Silently (Dex), Profession (Wis), Search (Int), Sense Motive (Wis), Spot (Wis), Survival (Wis), Swim (Str), Tumble (Dex) and Use Rope (Dex).|}

Class Features[edit]

The masters of all types of ranged attacks. The Sniper is to an archer what a Samurai is to a footsoldier. All of the following are class features of the Sniper.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency: A Sniper is Proficient with all projectile and thrown Simple and Martial Weapons, as well as one projectile or thrown Exotic Weapon of their choice. They are proficient with Light Armors, and Light Shields and Bucklers.

Sniper's Focus (Ex): Sniper's are incredibly adept at striking foes successfully from greater distances. At 1st level a sniper adds 10' to the range increment of any thrown and projectile weapons she wields. At every level thereafter this increases by 10', i.e.: Seraphina a 1st level Elf Sniper wielding a Composite Great Bow would have an effective range increment of 140'. This bonus stacks with all other types and is to be applied before the effects that multiply the range increment like Far Shot. At 3rd level a sniper increases the critical threat range of any thrown and projectile weapons she wields double. At 6th level and every three levels thereafter this bonus doubles again following the rules for doubling (two doublings are a tripling and three doublings are a quadrupling), i.e.: Seraphina a 6th level Elf Sniper wielding a Composite Great Bow would have a critical threat range of 18-20/x4 and an effective range increment of 190'. At 5th level a sniper increases the critical damage multiplier by one. At 10th level and every five levels thereafter this bonus increases by one, i.e.: Seraphina a 10th level Sniper Wielding a Composite Great Bow would have a range increment of 230', and a critical threat range of 17-20/x5.

Weapon Focus: At 1st level a sniper gains Weapon Focus as a Bonus Feat. She must choose a Thrown or Projectile Weapon she has Proficiency in.

Bonus Feat: At 1st Level a sniper gains a bonus feat from the fighter bonus feat list, but with the following restrictions: they must be for non-melee combat . At 2nd level and again at 6th level and every four levels thereafter the Sniper gains an additional feat, which must be chosen from the same list. The Sniper must qualify for all feats as normal. These are in addition to the feats a character gets at 1st and every three levels.

Insightful Strike (Ex): A Sniper's training has enabled them to better place their attacks for greater effect. Beginning at 2nd level a Sniper adds their Intelligence Bonus to attacks rolls and damage rolls with any ranged weapon she wields.

Weapon Enhancement (Sp): A snipers' weapons begin to take on a magical nature. At 2nd level a sniper is able to enchant their ranged attacks with an enhancement bonus to attack and damage rolls. Thrown weapons gain this bonus only to ranged attacks made with them, and projectile weapons bestow this to both the ammunition and weapon itself. At 4th level and every even level thereafter this bonus increases by +1. The weapon must observe the rules for magically enhancing their weapon, i.e. Seraphina a 12th level Elf Sniper wielding a Mighty +4 Composite Great Bow would have a total of +6 enhancement to each the bow and the arrows, but since she is less than 20th level she could only have up to a +5 bonus to her attack and damage rolls to each the bow and arrows and a +1 to enchantments for each.

Sniper's Grace (Ex): At 4th level, the ranger gains a +1 bonus on Reflex and Will Saves. At 8th level and every four levels thereafter these bonuses improve by one, to a maximum of +5 at 20th level.

Uncanny Dodge (Ex): Starting at 4th level, a sniper can react to danger before his senses would normally allow him to do so. He retains his Dexterity bonus to AC (if any) even if she is caught flat-footed or struck by an invisible attacker. However, he still loses his Dexterity bonus to AC if immobilized. If a character already has uncanny dodge from a second class, the character automatically gains improved uncanny dodge instead, and the levels from the classes that grant uncanny dodge stack to determine the minimum sniper or rogue level required to flank the character.

Weapon Specialization: At 4th level a sniper gains Weapon Specialization as a Bonus Feat. He must choose the weapon with which he previously chose Weapon Focus with.

Wise Defense (Ex): At 5th level a sniper is allowed to add her Wisdom bonus to his AC, so long as she wears light or no armor.

Evasion (Ex): At 6th level, a sniper can avoid even magical and unusual attacks with great agility. If she makes a successful Reflex saving throw against an attack that normally deals half damage on a successful save, she instead takes no damage. Evasion can be used only if the sniper is wearing light armor or no armor. A helpless sniper does not gain the benefit of evasion.

Improved Uncanny Dodge (Ex): At 8th level and higher, a sniper can no longer be flanked. This defense denies another sniper or rogue the ability to sneak attack the character by flanking him, unless the attacker has at least four more sniper or rogue levels than the target does sniper levels. If a character already has uncanny dodge from a second class, the character automatically gains improved uncanny dodge instead, and the levels from the classes that grant uncanny dodge stack to determine the minimum sniper or rogue level required to flank the character.

Greater Weapon Focus: At 8th level a sniper gains Greater Weapon Focus as a Bonus Feat. He must choose the weapon he previously chose with Weapon Focus.

Ranged Weapon Mastery: At 8th level a sniper gains Ranged Weapon Mastery as a Bonus Feat. He must choose the weapon he previously chose with Weapon Focus.

Improved Evasion (Ex): Starting at 12th level, this ability works like evasion, except that while the sniper still takes no damage on a successful Reflex saving throw against attacks henceforth she takes only half damage on a failed save. A helpless sniper does not gain the benefit of improved evasion.

Greater Weapon Specialization: At 12th level a sniper gains Greater weapon Specialization as a Bonus Feat. She must choose the weapon he previously chose with Weapon Focus.

Weapon Supremacy: At 18th level a Sniper gains Weapon Supremacy as a Bonus Feat. She must choose the weapon she previously chose for Weapon Focus.

Epic Sniper[edit]

Table: The Epic Sniper

Hit Die: d6

Level Special
21st Sniper's Focus
22nd Sniper's Focus, Weapon Enhancement +11
23rd Sniper's Focus
24th Sniper's Focus, Sniper's Grace +6, Weapon Enhancement +12
25th Sniper's Focus
26th Sniper's Focus, Weapon Enhancement +13
27th Sniper's Focus
28th Sniper's Focus, Sniper's Grace +7, Weapon Enhancement +14
29th Sniper's Focus
30th Sniper's Focus, Weapon Enhancement +15

6 + Int modifier skill points per level.

Sniper's Focus (Ex): At 21st level and beyond Snipers' Focus continues to increase in power. The Range Increment continues to increase by 10' every level thereafter, i.e.: Seraphina a 21st level Elf Sniper wielding a +7 Keen Distance Mighty +4 Composite Great Bow with Far Shot feat would have a range increment of 1020' for the first increment. The Critical Threat Range continues to increase every three levels adding an additional double, i.e. x7 at 21st Seraphina an 21st level Elf Sniper wielding a +7 Keen Distance Composite Great Bow with improved and keen critical feats would have a threat range of 10-20/x7. The Critical Damage Multiplier continues to increase by +1 every five levels after 20th, i.e.: Seraphina a 25th level Elf Sniper wielding a +8 Keen Distance Composite Great Bow with the Improved, Keen and Greater Critical feats would have a Critical of 9-20/x10.

Weapon Enhancement (Sp): A Sniper's magical nature grows into epic strength. A Sniper can now choose epic weapon enhancements in addition to the ones she could before. For every two levels after 20th this bonus increases by +1. Projectile weapon continue to apply this bonus to both the ammunition and the weapon itself, and thrown weapons still only apply this to the weapon, i.e. Seraphina a 22nd level Elf Sniper wielding a Composite Great Bow would have an effective enhancement bonus of +11 to the bow itself and a +11 to the arrows she fires from it for a total of +12 to the attack and damage rolls and a +10 to additional enhancements.

Sniper's Grace (Ex): For every four levels beyond 20th Sniper's Grace continues to increase by +1.

Epic Sniper Bonus Feat List: A Sniper gains an epic bonus feat starting at 23rd level and three levels thereafter gains an epic bonus feat. These may be chosen from the Epic Fighter bonus feat list.


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