Swarmer (3.5e Class)

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A swarmer is a caster who specializes in the art of summoning and controlling hordes of allies, though individually weak, are able to converge and assault their enemies as a single, powerful body. Their spells focus on mass summoning, area of effect spells, and mass buffs. Their power logarithmically increases as they increase level. One may argue that a level low-level swarmer is amongst the weakest of characters, yet a level much higher level swarmer can easily be amongst the strongest.

Making a Swarmer[edit]

Swarmers are lethal from a range, but tend to flounder in one-on-one melee combat; as such, they are best suited in the back of a party, summoning their swarms to the front lines.

A list of swarms can be found here: http://www.filedropper.com/swarms

Abilities: Swarmers 'cast' without preparation from a limited selection of abilities. Unless otherwise noted, this may be done as limitless times per day. They require a high Charisma, as their swarms last for (Charisma Modifier * Time points) minutes. When a swarm is summoned, the swarmer may also spend a number of points from his Swarming Cache to increase the amount of time that he may maintain control of his summoned swarms. Each point spent is herein referred to as a 'Time point'. A swarmer with a higher charisma subsequently has more points in his Swarming Cache.

Summoning A swarmer summons from what is known as a 'Swarming Cache'. This cache determines how many swarms a swarmer may control at any given time, and for how long he may maintain control. The number of swarms that a swarmer may control at any given time is equal to his level in swarmer, plus his charisma modifier in CR. For instance, a level 6 swarmer, with a charisma score of 10, could summon up to 6 CR 1 swarms, or a single CR 6 swarm (or any combination in between), but not a CR 9 swarm. Casting takes 1 round.

Races: Physically weak or frail races are more likely to be swarmers, such as Elves or Halflings.

Alignment: Any.

Starting Gold: 4d6×10 gp

Starting Age: Any.

Table: The Swarmer

Hit Die: d4

Level Base
Attack Bonus
Saving Throws Special
Fort Ref Will
1st +0 +0 +0 +2 Swarming Cache
2nd +1 +0 +0 +3 Controlled Summoning
3rd +2 +1 +1 +3 Bonus Feat
4th +3 +1 +1 +4 Lesser Hive mind
5th +3 +1 +1 +4 Uncanny Dodge
6th +4 +2 +2 +5 Living Shield
7th +5 +2 +2 +5 Silthilar's Grafting
8th +6\+1 +2 +2 +6 Carry
9th +6\+1 +3 +3 +6 Shroud
10th +7\+2 +3 +3 +7
11th +8\+3 +3 +3 +7 Improved Uncanny Dodge
12th +9\+4 +4 +4 +8 Living Armor
13th +9\+4 +4 +4 +8
14th +10\+5 +4 +4 +9 Bonus Feat
15th +11\+6\+1 +5 +5 +9
16th +12\+7\+2 +5 +5 +10 Greater Hive mind, Discorporate
17th +12\+7\+2 +5 +5 +10 Bonus Feat
18th +13\+8\+3 +6 +6 +11
19th +14\+9\+4 +6 +6 +11 Bonus Feat
20th +15\+10\+5 +6 +6 +12 Mother Swarm

Class Skills (4 + Int modifier per level, ×4 at 1st level)
Bluff (Cha), Concentration (Con), Craft (Int), Knowledge (Nature) (Int), Profession (Wis), Spot (Wis), Listen (Wis), Search (Wis)

Class Features[edit]

All of the following are class features of the swarmer.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency: Swarmers are proficient with all simple weapons. They are not proficient with any type of armor or shield, aside from those made from their swarms.

Swarming Cache: The swarmer has a metaphysical cache of points that he uses to summon the swarms that the class is derived from. The cache is, barring any abilities, equal to (1 + (swarmer level / 10)) * (swarmer ECL + Cha mod). This cache, known as the "Swarming Cache", is depleted by summoning. Each summoned creature depletes a number of points from the Swarming Cache equal to the summoned swarm's CR. The points return to the cache once the swarm is defeated, dispelled, or otherwise no longer controlled by the Swarmer.

Controlled Summoning (Ex) : The swarmer now has control over any creatures summoned and can now disperse the swarm, or direct who the swarm attacks.

Lesser Hive mind (Su): The swarmer has a loose mental link with the Hive mind of the swarm, and can relay messages to it. The hive mind can receive messages and obey simple commands. Such commands may have a number of steps equal to the swarmer's charisma modifier. Ex: "Enter the vent, tell me what is in the room."

Uncanny Dodge (Ex) At 5th level, a swarmer retains his Dexterity bonus to AC (if any) even if he is caught flat-footed or struck by an invisible attacker. However, he still loses his Dexterity bonus to AC if immobilized. If a swarmer already has uncanny dodge from a different class, he automatically gains improved uncanny dodge instead.

Living Shield (Ex): The swarmer can instruct the swarm to take a hit for the swarmer, and if close enough (3 meters or less), can roll a reflex (versus the attack roll of the one attacking the swarmer) save to take all the damage the swarmer would have received.

Improved Uncanny Dodge (Ex) At 11th level and higher, a swarmer can no longer be flanked. This defense denies a rogue the ability to sneak attack the swarmer by flanking him, unless the attacker has at least four more rogue levels than the target has swarmer 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 level a rogue must be to flank the character.

Living Armor (Ex): The swarmer can instruct a swarm to gather around the swarmer, increasing his abilities and adding armor. This armor can be layered over top of normal armor, or underneath. The swarmer is automatically proficient with any armor made from his swarm. Armor made from swarms can absorb damage up to its own HP, at which point it dies, falling off of the swarmer. When a swarmer wears this armor, he gains Frightful Presence, as described below.

  • Armor from a swarm of fine creatures has: +3 Max Dex, +2 Natural AC bonus.
  • Armor from a swarm of diminutive creatures has: +2 Max Dex, +3 Natural AC bonus.
  • Armor from a swarm of tiny creatures has: +1 Max Dex, +4 Natural AC bonus.

Frightful Presence (Su): When a swarmer wears his Living Armor, witnesses must make a Will save (DC 10 + 1/2 the swarmer’s HD + the swarmer’s Cha modifier), unless they surpass the swarmer's HD by 5 or more. Those who make the save are shaken. Those who fail by 5 or fewer points are frightened. Those who fail by 6 to 10 points are panicked. Those who fail by 11 or more points are cowering. All these conditions last for 1d4 rounds. Those who have seen a swarmer use this ability before gain a +5 bonus on their saving throws.

Shroud (Ex): The swarmer can command a flying swarm to enshroud him, providing cover. This cover grants a +2 dodge bonus to the swarmers AC, and an additional +2 if the swarm is composed of a hard hard material (such as metal.) This shroud also offers total concealment, and consequently, a 50% miss chance. If a foe's attack roll would hit the swarmers AC normally, but not his adjusted AC, he hits the swarm instead.

Silthilar's Grafting (Sp): The swarmer gains the ability to summon Silthilars that can graft additional armor into his flesh. The grafts cost nothing to the swarmer, but the grafts can only be applied to the swarmer. The grafts are only active while a Silthilar swarm summoned by the swarmer is active. Each Silthilar swarm has 5 graft points to expend. Grafting requires concentration for 1 minute per point spent while it is being applied. While the act of grafting is magical, the grafts themselves are non-magical, unless otherwise noted.

  • Chitin Plating: This graft consists of numerous interlocking chitin plates grafted onto the creature’s skin. These plates are tough, yet flexible, and grant the recipient a natural armor bonus ranging from +1 to +5. This natural armor bonus does not stack with any other natural armor bonus the creature might possess as a virtue of his race, but it does stack with enhancement bonuses to natural armor granted by magic such as barkskin or an amulet of natural armor.
    • 1 graft point = +1 natural armor bonus, up to +5
  • Flexible Spine: This invasive graft replaces the creature’s spine, including the spinal cord, with a much more flexible and efficient set of nerves and vertebrae. The graft grants a +4 racial bonus on initiative checks, Balance checks, Escape Artist checks, and Tumble checks.
    • 2 Graft points
  • Extended Legs: This graft extends the creature’s legs, making it taller and faster. The creature’s height increases by 5%, but this does not increase the creature’s size category. The creature’s base land speed increases by 5 feet.
    • 1 Graft Point
  • Healing Blood: This unique graft consists of a total transfusion of blood. The creature’s original blood supply is drained completely and replaced with a similar fluid that grants the grafted creature fast healing 2.
    • 3 Graft Points
  • Rudimentary Eyespots: This graft consists of several patches of light-sensitive skin placed on the back of the grafted creature’s neck and the back of each hand. These patches improve the grafted creature’s vision, granting it a +4 bonus on Spot checks. In addition, the creature can no longer be flanked.
    • 2 Graft Points
  • Silthilar Bones: This graft transforms and augments the creature’s skeletal structure, making it stronger. The grafted bones improve the creature’s Constitution score by 2 points.
    • 2 Graft Points
  • Silthilar Heart: This complex graft adds several augmentations to the grafted creature’s heart and cardiovascular system. If the grafted creature drops below 1 hit point but not below –10 hit points, the graft immediately generates a pulse of magic healing that cures 4d8+20 points of damage. A silthilar heart can generate this healing only once every 24 hours.
    • 5 Graft Points
  • Silthilar Muscles: This graft transforms and augments the creature’s existing muscles. The grafted muscles improve the creature’s Strength score by 2 points.
    • 2 Graft Points
  • Silthilar Tendons: This graft replaces the creature’s tendons, making the creature more adroit and coordinated. The grafted tendons improve the creature’s Dexterity score by 2 points.
    • 2 Graft Points

Carry (Ex): The swarmer can command his swarm, if they have the ability to fly and to grasp things, to pick something up and carry it to a destination. This object can be a willing target or the swarmer himself, amongst other things. This ability is best used with any of the 34 breeds of African Swallow.

Living Weapon (Su): The swarmer can command a swarm to form a weapon. This weapon may not be bladed, but can have a point. This weapon may be anything the swarmer may normally wield.

Greater Hive mind (Su): The swarmer can now give more complex messages to his swarms, as "Lesser Hive Mind" but a number of steps equal to the swarmer's charisma score.

Discorporate (Sp): If gravely threatened, a swarmer can discorporate, simply falling into a pile of individual vermin that quickly slither away. So long as any of the component vermin survive, they can breed and create a new body to house the swarmer’s intelligence and personality. Discorporating is a dangerous tactic, because once separated, the vermin are treated no differently than other vermin, and the swarmer stands a good chance of losing all his equipment. However, discorporation almost always assures that at least one maggot (if not dozens) will manage to crawl away thus ultimately assuring for the swarmer’s continued existence.

Mother Swarm (Ex): The swarmer may create a gargantuan swarm so dense it can block the sun, this swarm can fill every square within 120" ft. (if a non-flying swarm the affected area is considered dangerous terrain, if a flying swarm all affected creatures in area lose all vision and hearing.) (can be held back as a surplus swarm, when withholding the mother swarm grants access to a limitless swarm cache.) Openings can be made in the mother swarm for allies to pass through.



Epic Swarmer[edit]

Table: The Epic Swarmer

Hit Die: d4

Level Special

4 + Int modifier skill points per level.



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

Epic Swarmer Bonus Feat List: .

Swarmer 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 Swarmer[edit]

Religion: .

Other Classes: .

Combat: .

Advancement: .

Swarmers in the World[edit]


Daily Life: .

Notables: .

Organizations: .

NPC Reactions: .

Swarmer 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 .

Swarmers in the Game[edit]

Adaptation: .

Sample Encounter: .

EL : .

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