The Path of Four Winds (3.5e Prestige Class)
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Path of Four Winds
|“||I once fought the winds as I walked the path. Now I embrace the Winds and they guide my every step.||”|
|—Elerond, Human Monk|
Learning from all that surrounds him is a key element in the mind of a martial artist. Those few who follow the Path of Four Winds find that not only do they learn to accept change more readily, but that they can flow with it more freely as well. Following the guidance of one of the Four Winds to fit each moment, the Devotee finds his skills sharpened with each passing season.
Becoming a Devotee on the Path of Four Winds
Characters who begin their studies as Monks are often attracted to this class as it allows for more focused options with regards to their already impressive class abilities. Wizards and Sorcerers are sometimes attracted to this class as a means of offsetting some of their lack-luster combat abilities. Fighters and Barbarians who often enjoy classes that tend to wear heavy armor often shun this class due to the armor restriction for many of the class' features. Rogues and Barbarians avoid this class due to the Alignment restriction.
|Base Attack Bonus:||+5.|
|Skills:||Concentration 8 ranks, Knowledge(Arcana) 8 ranks, Listen 6 ranks, Spot 6 ranks.|
|Feats:||Evasion, Improved Unarmed Strike.|
|1st||+0||+1||+1||+1||Wind Mastery 1, +1 level to Monk Flurry of Blows Attacks Bonus, +1 level to all Unarmed Damage|
|2nd||+1||+1||+1||+1||Wind Mastery 2, +1 level to Monk Flurry of Blows Attacks Bonus, +1 level to all Unarmed Damage|
|3rd||+2||+2||+2||+2||Wind Mastery 3, +1 level to Monk Flurry of Blows Attacks Bonus, +1 level to all Unarmed Damage|
|4th||+3||+2||+2||+2||Wind Mastery 4, +1 level to Monk Flurry of Blows Attacks Bonus, +1 level to all Unarmed Damage|
|5th||+4||+3||+3||+3||True Wind Mastery, +1 level to Monk Flurry of Blows Attacks Bonus, +1 level to all Unarmed Damage|
Class Skills (4 + Int modifier per level)
Like the gentile breeze of Summer, the gusty gales of Spring and Fall and biting winds of Winter one need only watch, listen and feel their touch to know their natures. Be they the cooling breezes that bring relief or those of the storms that spawn the cyclones of Spring or the Tsunami of Fall, which rip up the land or wash it away, even the fierce winds of Winter whose chill saps the strength even from the land itself, so too are the travelers down the Path of Four Winds. All of the following are class features of The Path of Four Winds.
Flurry of Blows Bonus: +1/ level you have of The Path of Four Winds.
Unarmed Damage Bonus: +1/ level you have in The Path of Four Winds.
Wind Mastery 1- Healing Winds(EX): You are able to move the air about you so that it eases pain, suffering ailments and injury. On a 1d6/ level of this class, you are able to treat any and all; wounds or afflictions as though they were healed by an equivalent spell. You do this by channeling your ki into the air and infusing it with the opposite nature to the ailment and/or injury. Usable once per level in Path of Four Winds you have.
Wind Mastery 2- Forceful Winds(EX): You bend the air around you to strike, push, pull, lift, slam and fling your foes like dust on the wind. You must declare the option you want the before you make an attack roll. The target is allowed a Con save DC10+ your Path level+ 1/2 any levels of Monk you have, to negate movement and take only half damage from the attack. Failure results in taking 2d8 damage and be moved 5'/ level of The Path of Four Winds that you have. Usable once per your level in Path of Four Winds.
Wind Mastery 3- Torrential Winds(EX): With your ki you pull vast amounts of moisture from the air around you and use it with devastating effect. On a successful attack roll, you slam the target and adjacent foes, with a wall of water- equivalent to the wall of water spell with your 1/2 your HD as the caster level. At the start of your next turn, the primary target it hit with a bolt of lightning equivalent to the spell of the same name, again using 1/1 your HD as the caster level for damage and save DC. You can then slam then again with another wall of water and corresponding lightning bolt. This can only be done a number of times as you have levels in The Path of Four Winds, before the air is too dry to bring forth the water. Arid, and desert conditions will also affect this ability,just as being near a large body of water or being in a rain storm. Usable once per level in Path of Four Winds you have, or as conditions warrant.
Wind Mastery 4- Scathing Winds(EX): You can call forth winds that can slice, immobilize, or flash freeze your target in an instant. The winds you call with your ki can cut like a Great Axe, immobilize like the grapple of a giant or roper, or even freeze like the breath weapon of a dragon. Damage and saves are based on your HD+ Path level in the type of attack that is done, with the exception of the Great Axe equivalent damage. Hot/ Tropical regions, are not as conducive to cold as are arctic conditions or winter seasons. Deserts are also not perfect for this either, especially during the daylight hours, night hours could be if there is sufficient water in the area for chilling the air. Usable once per level in Path of Four Winds you have or as conditions warrant.
True Wind Mastery(EX): Your mastery in The Path of Four Winds grants you an additional use of your mastery per level you have in The Path of Four Winds. Healing Winds can now heal and cure even the most severe of injuries and conditions, except for mummy rot and lycanthropy. Forceful Winds now grant you the Manifest Cyclone(EX) ability which will track enemies for as many rounds as you have levels in Path of Four Winds, dealing damage as Whirlwind spell with d10 damage dice. Your Torrential Winds now add effects with damage dice one step high than found in the Storm of Vengeance spell, and you only have to make one concentration check for it to last the full duration. Lastly, your Scathing Winds gain the ability to effect targets with a hardness rating of 6/ level of Path of Four Winds you have. Targets that have specific things that can still damage their hardness can save for no damage, all others have to save for half or shatter, dealing damage appropriately.
You are like a force of nature. You bring aid to those in need, deal with those who would bring chaos and punish those who have a very stunted learning curve.
Playing The Path of Four Winds
Combat: Multifaceted. Reading the winds of change can have this class fill various roles; they can heal, function as a crowd controller, ranged or melee combatant by using these class skills or those of the Monk.
Advancement: This class is an padding class in that it is only five levels, so one could take another prestige class to finish out to ten levels. This class is best multiclassed with the Monk and as such can freely allow the Monk to continue to gain levels in Monk while taking this class.
Resources: The Path of Four Winds is a solitary existence and just as the winds of change are constantly blowing, one could follow the wind to encounters with a fellow traveler, from time to time. As for resources, they have a saying; "The wind will provide".
The Path of Four Winds in the World
|“||We are on a journey and where that leads is any way the wind blows, since it is our guide.||”|
|—Dahl Musquat, Githzerai Monk 10/ The Path of Four Winds 5|
They can be useful when the need is great and usually blow in just as they are needed, then blowing out as soon as their task is done. They will join parties from time to time, but usually just go with the flow of the breeze.
NPC Reactions: They are seen as wanderers, vagrants, nomads, travelers, and poor souls lost in the clouds. They are often misunderstood, but when an ill-wind blows, they will be there to blow back.
The Path of Four Winds Lore
Characters with ranks in Knowledge (nature) and Knowledge (religion) can research The Path of Four Winds to learn more about them. When a character makes a skill check, read or paraphrase the following, including information from lower DCs.
|11||They seek out this path after some event with wind.|
|16||Only those who have survived a wind attack can hear the call, and try to answer.|
|21||Most attacks are by powerful Air Elementals. Survivors claim to hear the winds calling to them.|
|26||They are chosen by the winds themselves to follow and be trained by the winds.|
The Path of Four Winds in the Game
The Path of Four Winds is a multi-role PC as described above. As a NPC they can be the weird guy the PCs passed by that one time, or any number of uses, usually as plot hooks.
Adaptation: This is a fairly powerful class and when multiclassed with the Monk it can be some what unbalancing. The class can be modified as the DM sees fit to bring it into their game if they should desire to do so.
Sample Encounter: Your party is traveling along the road to the next destination when a very odd acting sort of fellow comes blowing out of the dense forest on your right, alarmed as you would be he looks to pose no real threat to anyone but himself. He's mumbling incoherently about the wind and how the sounds are arguing, asks if anyone else can hear them and when none of you can, he heads off down the road a bit and into the dense woods on the opposite side of the road. You all comment on what an odd duck he is and turn to on down the road, but before you've taken another step, the sound of a fierce gale, flash of light and the crack of thunder and out of the woods the guy just went into a very large ettin comes flying out looking all the much worse for wear. That same guy comes out and now sounding oddly sane says, "So that's why the winds were arguing." The he looks over at the party an waves and you all realize that the creature he just took down could have wiped out the entire party before you knew what hit you.
EL: <-Encounter scenario and character info on sample NPC including stat block. The CR of the NPC is typically the same as the EL for the encounter->