The Barbed Hand of Loviatar (3.5e Prestige Class)

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The Barbed Hand of Loviatar[edit]

The Barbed Hand is an elite warrior and priestess of Loviatar. Raised from birth to hunt enemies of the Willing Whip, the Hand also acts as a censure, executioner and assassin for the church of Loviatar. I originally created this prestige class for my sister.

Becoming a Barbed Hand of Loviatar[edit]

Barbed Hands almost always start with at least one level of Cleric, usually adding a few levels of Fighter or Rogue along the way.

Entry Requirements
Alignment: Lawful Evil or Lawful Neutral.
Base Attack Bonus: +6
Race: Human or Half-Drow elf
Gender: Female
Skills: Heal 10 ranks, Intimidate 5 ranks, Knowledge (Religion) 10 ranks.
Feats: Power Attack, Willing Deformity, Weapon Focus (Nagaika, scourge or whip).
Spellcasting: Must be able to cast divine spells.
Patron: Loviatar
Domains: Pain.
Special: Must fill the list of spiritual requirements:

The character must:

  • -be pure or virginal (As determined by the DM).
  • -have tortured ten intelligent beings to death, two of which must be divine spellcasters of another deity; two others must be divine spellcasters of Loviatar.
  • -abstain from all drugs and alcohol.
  • -have dropped below -10 hit points from self-inflicted injuries.

Table: The Barbed Hand of Loviatar

Hit Die: d8

Level Base
Attack Bonus
Saving Throws Special Spellcasting
Fort Ref Will
1st +1 +2 +0 +0 Scarification +1, A Thousand Little Cuts --
2nd +2 +3 +0 +0 Scarification +2, Zone of Truth +1 existing divine spellcasting class
3rd +3 +3 +1 +1 Scarification +3, Sneak attack +1d6 +1 existing divine spellcasting class
4th +4 +4 +1 +1 Scarification +4, Frightful Presence +1 existing divine spellcasting class
5th +5 +4 +1 +1 Scarification +5, Excruciating attack +1 existing divine spellcasting class

Class Skills (4 + Int modifier per level)
Bluff (Cha), Escape Artist (Dex), Heal (Wis), Intimidate (Cha), Knowledge (Religion) (Int), Use Rope (Dex). |}

Class Features[edit]

Weapon and Armor Proficiency: The Barbed Hand has proficiency with all martial weapons, as well as with the scourge and nagaika.

Spellcasting: At each level after first, you gain new spells per day and an increase in caster level (and spells known, if applicable) as if you had also gained a level in a divine spellcasting class to which you belonged before adding the prestige class level. You do not, however, gain any other benefit a character of that class would have gained. If you had more than one divine spellcasting class before becoming a Barbed Hand, you must decide to which class to add each level for the purpose of determining spells per day, caster level, and spells known.

Scarification (Ex): Through self-mutilation, your skin has become a morass of scar tissue granting you a +1 natural armor bonus. This increases by +1 at every level (Max +5 at 5th level). This stacks with natural armor from any other source.

A Thousand Little Cuts (Ex): You gain extra attacks per round when wielding a nagaika, scourge or whip as shown on the table below; each extra attack takes a penalty to attack and damage rolls as shown on the table and adds only half your Strength bonus to attack and damage, however a Hand with the Weapon Finesse feat may still add her full Dexterity modifier to attack rolls. Using this ability is a full-round action.

Table: A Thousand Little Cuts
Lvl Extra Attacks
1st -5
2nd -5/-5
3rd -4/-5/-5
4th -4/-4/-5/-5
5th -3/-4/-5/-5/-5

Zone of Truth: At 2nd level, a Hand is surrounded by a continous Zone of Truth affect, with a caster level of the Hand's character level. Worshippers of Loviatar take a −4 penalty on the Will save to negate.

Sneak Attack (Ex): At 3rd level you gain a sneak attack ability that deals 1d6 points of damage. This stacks with sneak attack damage from other classes. If you use sneak attack in conjunction with your A Thousand Little Cuts ability, you add extra damage only once. For more information see the rogue class ability.

Frightful Presence (Ex): At 4th level a Barbed Hand can unsettle foes with its mere presence. The ability takes effect automatically whenever the Hand attacks, charges or draws a weapon. Creatures within a radius of 10 feet x the Hands class levels are subject to the effect if they have fewer HD than the Hand. A potentially affected creature that succeeds on a Will save (DC 10 + 1/2 Hand's HD + Hand's Cha modifier) remains immune to that Hand's frightful presence for 24 hours. On a failure, creatures with 4 or less HD become panicked for 4d6 rounds and those with 5 or more HD become shaken for 4d6 rounds. Worshippers of Loviatar take a -4 penalty on this save.

Excruciating Attack: Any time when you use a sneak attack with any of the weapons listed above in conjunction with the Power Attack feat, you may designate an excruciating attack. This attack forgoes the sneak attack and weapon damage in exchange for 1d6 points of Constitution damage and the opponent must make a Will save (DC 10 + Barbed Hand class level+ Hand's Wis modifier) or be confused for 1d4 rounds. Using the sbility is a full-round action that provokes attacks of opportunity

Ex-Barbed Hands[edit]

A Barbed Hand who ceases to be lawful or who grossly violates the spiritual requirements of this class becomes marked by the church of Loviatar for excommunication and possibly termination. She may not progress any farther in levels as a Barbed Hand and loses the ability to cast divine spells. She regains her abilities and advancement potential if she atones for her violations (see the atonement spell description), as appropriate.

Campaign Information[edit]

Playing a Barbed Hand of Loviatar[edit]

Combat: Barbed Hands combine potent divine magic with a terrible slew of melee attack options. Barbed Hands usually cast as many protection spells as possible before charging headfirst into melee, slashing left and right with their whips. Due to a naturally aloof nature, Barbed Hands are Not team players and tend to leave their companions as soon as possible (as permitted by her goddess of course), often in the middle of a battle.

Advancement: Barbed Hands typically progress as Clerics and/or Fighters, usually with equal levels of each.

Resources: Barbed Hands are strongly affiliated with the church of Loviatar, although most Loviatarites resent the Hands for being chosen to mete out punishment with in the clergy itself. A Hand ranks higher than the highest priestesses but just below Loviatar's Chosen, although this position has not been filled in years. Whether the church of Loviatar likes it or not, they must expend any resources necessary to aid a Hand in her tasks.

Barbed Hand of Loviatar Lore[edit]

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

Knowledge (Religion)
DC Result
10 A Barbed Hand is a worshipper of Loviatar, the goddess of pain.
15 Barbed Hands are powerful warrior-judges who cull the weak from Loviatar's faithful.
25 A Barbed Hand can unsettle the bravest warrior merely by brandishing her weapon.
30 A Barbed Hand ranks higher than the highest priestess of Loviatar, and she answers only to the Willing Whip herself.

Barbed Hands in the Game[edit]

Barbed Hands, while exceptionally rare, tend to crop up near cults of Loviatar around Faerun. There is no love lost between said cults and the Hands, but in their goddess's eyes betraying a Hand for no good reason is enough to ensure an early grave.

Adaptation: While Barbed Hands are specific to the Forgotten Realms setting, it would be simple to just change the required deity and races, to make them suitable for your campaign.

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