True Ronin (3.5e Class)

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True Ronin[edit]

Masterful fighters, True Ronin are artisans with sword, combining power, and grace to carve a masterpiece on the battlefield. They live for the thrill of battle, and often see their worst enemy as a valued friend, each trying their hardest to best the other, and ending up strengthening together.

Making a True Ronin[edit]

A True Ronin is a Samurai with no master, whose worst enemy is their greatest friend. One of their best assets is their Zanshin, a state of mind in which they react instinctively to danger. True Ronin make excellent front line fighters, granting spellcasters, or healers cover, and simultaneously benefit from them.

Abilities: Strength is paramount to a True Ronin, being a martial class, but Dexterity is also good due to their lack of armor, Wisdom for sharp senses, and a higher AC bonus, the ronin may also use his dexterity modifier for damage, or strength, whichever is higher.

Races: Any.

Alignment: A True Ronin may be of any alignment, though their vicious attitude in battle often lead to a chaotic alignment. A few Ronin have a personal code they adhere to.

Starting Gold: 1d8x10 gp + Masterwork Katana + Traveling Duster.

Starting Age: As Rogue.

Table: The True Ronin

Hit Die: d10

Level Base
Attack Bonus
Saving Throws Special AC
Speed Bonus
Fort Ref Will
1st +1 +2 +3 +3 Katana, Live by the Sword, Ancestral Weaponry, Bonus Feat +1 +0 ft.
2nd +2 +3 +4 +4 Uncanny Dodge, Quick Draw, Horde Breaker, Bonus Feat +1 +0 ft.
3rd +3 +3 +4 +4 Ki Strike, Wise Life, Fast Movement, Sword As Shield, Kiai! +2 +10 ft.
4th +4 +4 +5 +5 Whirlwind Attack, Bonus Feat +2 +10 ft.
5th +5 +4 +5 +5 Combat Reflexes, Terrible Blows +3 +10 ft.
6th +6/+1 +5 +6 +6 Improved Uncanny Dodge, Ki Strike, Blindfighting, Bonus Feat +3 +20 ft.
7th +7/+2 +5 +6 +6 Iaijutsu, Bonus Feat +4 +20 ft.
8th +8/+3 +6 +7 +7 Katana Specialization, Favored Weapon, Parry Magic, Bonus Feat +4 +20 ft.
9th +9/+4 +6 +7 +7 Ki Strike, Subtle Cut +5 +30 ft.
10th +10/+5 +7 +8 +8 Blade of Devastation, Bonus Feat +5 +30 ft.
11th +11/+6/+1 +7 +8 +8 Wholeness of Body, Iaijutsu Focus +6 +30 ft.
12th +12/+7/+2 +8 +9 +9 Ki Strike, Greater Katana Focus, Cut Magic, Bonus Feat +6 +40 ft.
13th +13/+8/+3 +8 +9 +9 Deny Caster Defenses +7 +40 ft.
14th +14/+9/+4 +9 +10 +10 Greater Katana Specialization, Final Cut, Bonus Feat +7 +40 ft.
15th +15/+10/+5 +9 +10 +10 Ki Strike, Iaijutsu Master +8 +50 ft.
16th +16/+11/+6/+1 +10 +11 +11 Reflect Magic, Bonus Feat +8 +50 ft.
17th +17/+12/+7/+2 +10 +11 +11 Blade of Souls +9 +50 ft.
18th +18/+13/+8/+3 +11 +12 +12 Ki Strike, Deny Armor, Bonus Feat +9 +60 ft.
19th +19/+14/+9/+4 +11 +12 +12 Fighting Spirit +10 +60 ft.
20th +20/+15/+10/+5 +12 +13 +13 Iaijutsu Grandmaster, Bonus Feat +10 +60 ft.

Class Skills (5 + Int modifier per level, ×4 at 1st level)
Balance(Dex), Climb(Str), Concentration(Con), Craft(weaponsmithing)(Int), Diplomacy(Cha), Gather Info(Cha), Jump(Str), Listen(Wis), Move Silently, Perform(weapons drill)(cha), Search(Int), Sense Motive(Wis), Spot(Wis), Tumble(Dex)

Class Features[edit]

All of the following are class features of the True Ronin. True Ronin posess all non bushido only features, as they no longer follow this code.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency: True Ronin are proficient with their Katanas Bastard Sword, all simple and martial weapons, but not armour or shields.

When wearing any armor but light armor, using a shield, or carrying a medium or heavy load, a True Ronin loses their AC bonus, as well as their fast movement abilities.

AC Bonus (Ex): When wearing light armor and unencumbered, the True Ronin adds his Wisdom bonus (if any) to his AC.

These bonuses to AC apply even against touch attacks or when the True Ronin is flat-footed. The True Ronin loses this bonus when he is immobilized or helpless, when he wears any armour, when he carries a shield, or when he carries a medium or heavy load.

Maneuvers: The Ronin starts his career with knowledge of 3 maneuvers. The disciplines available to the Ronin are Diamond Mind, Iron Heart, Setting Sun, and White Raven. Once a samurai knows a maneuver, he must ready it (see Maneuvers Readied above). The Ronin’s maneuvers (and stances) are extraordinary abilities unless noted otherwise. These maneuvers are not subject to spell resistance and do not provoke an attack of opportunity. You learn 3 new maneuvers each level, however, you must meet all pre-requisites for the maneuver you wish to select before taking it. You may learn as many maneuvers as you wish, but only a maximum of your current level permits can be readied. Additionally at 4th level, and every other level after, the Ronin may select a new maneuver in exchange for one he already knows. In effect, he loses the old maneuver and gains the new one. This new maneuvers does not have to be the same level as the new maneuver, but the Ronin must still observe the restriction for the highest level maneuver he knows, and must meet all other pre-requisites before taking the new maneuver. Once you reach 3rd level you may choose one additional Manuever style, Shadow Hand, Devoted Spirit, etc.

Maneuvers Readied: The Ronin can ready 3 of his maneuvers at 1st level and 1 additional maneuver every other level up to a maximum of 12. In order to ready these maneuvers, the Ronin must spend 5 minutes in a meditative state. The Ronin may change his readied maneuvers, but only if he spends an additional 5 minutes in a meditative state.

Refreshing Maneuvers: The Ronin draws on insight and intuition to lend strength to his skills. As a standard action, the Ronin may recover a number of maneuvers equal to his Wisdom bonus (Min 1). The Ronin may not perform anything else during this action, and he does not provoke attacks of opportunity while refreshing his maneuvers.

Stances Known: The samurai begins his career with knowledge of one 1st level stance. At 2nd, 3rd,6th,9th 11th, 14th, and 18th levels, he may select an additional stance. Unlike maneuvers, stances are not expended, and they do not have to be readied. All stances are available at all times, and initiating or changing a stance counts as a swift action.

Katanas: At 1st level, a True Ronin gains his Katanas. These katanas are materwork bastard sword. The ronin gains weapon focus for his katanas as a bonus feat.

If a True Ronin uses any weapon, other than their Katana, martial/simple weapons, natural weapons, or unarmed strike, they lose all their class abilities until they draw their sword. If a Ronin loses their sword or its broken they keep their class abilities, except those specifically for their sword.

True Ronin: A masterwork bastard sword.(1d10 Damage 19/20 critical x2) for medium sized creatures This weapon has ghost touch making it able to hit ethereal creature's without the 50% miss chance

Live by the Sword(Su): At 1st level, a Ronin's Katana is magically attuned to them, if another person gets their sword and tries to use it on its owner, the sword simply passes through the Ronin. If a Ronin is separated from his Katana he can summon it to his hand. Summoning his Katana takes one round.

Ancestral Weaponry: Every culture with a Ronin tradition has a signature weapon that Samurai from that culture use. Whether it is the Spiked Chain of the Hobgoblin Khanate of Khadun or the Katana of the Human Empire of Rokugan, the weapon serves as a symbol of the office and prowess of the Samurai.

A Ronin can only have one weapon designated as his Ancestral Weapon at a time and this is handed down to him, and this weapon must be a masterwork weapon exalted by the Ronin's warrior culture. He must perform a 24 hour ritual to call his ancestral spirits into the weapon and designate it as his new Ancestral Weapon. This ritual costs 100 gp in incense and offerings, and once performed grants the following abilities:

  • Counts as his Katana for all Samurai abilities.
  • Has a minimum enhancement bonus to attack and damage equal to his level divided by two (maximum of +10 for a samurai of 20th level or lower).
  • The Ancestral weapon becomes indestructible, and has the Ghost Touch special property.
  • For every 5 kills with his Ancestral Weapon, the Ronin receives 2d8+4 of health back.

Uncanny Dodge(Ex): At 2nd level, a Ronin can react to danger before his senses would normally allow him to do so. He retains his Wisdom bonus to AC (if any) even if he is caught flat-footed or struck by an invisible attacker. However, he still loses his Wisdom bonus to AC if immobilized.

If a Ronin already has uncanny dodge from a different class she automatically gains improved uncanny dodge (see below) instead.

Quick Draw: At 2nd level, a Ronin can use Quick Draw.

Brilliant Strike: A Ronin gains the ability to over charge his katana. It begins to glow brightly and become infused with spiritual energy. The Ronin may release this energy in a slash, forming a wave that goes out 30 feet starting at the target. Dealing 3d8 and 1d8 extra for every 2 levels above the 2nd, to a maximum of +5d8 (8d8 total). Charging itself is a standard action.

Fast Movement A Ronin gains an enhanced bonus to speed as show on the Ronin table. This bonus stacks with a monks for determing your Fast movement bonus

Ki Strike(Su): At 3rd level, a Ronin gains the ability to channel his fighting spirit into his Katana, he gains an additional 1d6 damage/3 character levels when striking with his katana. This damage can be spread between two or more weapons however it decreases a dice size for every target beyond the first (2weapons is equal to 1d4, 3 wepons is 1d3 and it cannot be spread between anymore than three weapons.

Wise Life: At 3rd level and every three levels after e.g. 6, 9, 12, 15 and 18 The Ronin is able to add one point from her wisdom modifier if any to attack and damage. This increases to 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6 every three levels

Sword As Shield(Ex): At 3rd level, a Ronin has become proficient at defending with a sword as well as attacking. He gains a +1 deflection bonus to AC. This bonus increase +1 every 5th level after, to a max of +4. (+2 at 10th, +3 at 15th, and +4 at 20th). This Bonus stacks with any bonuses gained from levels in Monk if any for determining your bonus to ac.

This bonus to AC applies even against touch attacks or when the Ronin is flat-footed. The Ronin loses this bonus when he is immobilized or helpless, when he wears any armor, when he carries a shield, when he carries a medium or heavy load, or when the Ronin does not have his sword drawn while both hands are occupied. If the Ronin's sword is not drawn, but has at least one hand unoccupied, he automatically uses Quick Draw and retains the bonus to AC

Kiai! (Ex): At 3rd level, a Ronin may convert a successful strike into a confirmed critical hit. He may use this ability a number of times per day equal to half his Samurai level + 4. This ability is a free action that is declared after the strike is rolled and confirmed as a hit, but before damage is rolled. This ability cannot be used on Attacks of Opportunity.

Whirlwind Attack: At 4th level, a Ronin gains Whirlwind attack

Heavenly Strike: At 4th level the Ronin gains Heavenly Strike. The Ronin strikes so fast that he cannot be seen until a strike has been made then disappearing again to strike another. The Ronin rolls a 1d8 and the number it lands on is how many targets he may strike. The Ronin may strike the same target up to how many targets they were allowed. 2d8 Damage per strike. This attack may only be used once every 3 rounds.

Combat Reflexes: At 5th level a Ronin can use Combat Reflexes.

Terrible Blows (Su): At 5th level, a Ronin's Katana bypasses Damage Reduction and ignores Hardness.

Improved Uncanny Dodge (Ex): At 6th level, a Ronin can no longer be flanked. If the Ronin already has this feat, he may choose a Combat Feat instead, but only if he meets the prerequisites of that feat.

This defense denies another Ronin the ability to sneak attack the character by flanking him, unless the attacker has at least four more Ronin levels than the target does.

If a character already has uncanny dodge (see above) 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 Ronin level required to flank the character.

Blindfighting: A Ronin gains Blind Fighting as a bonus feat at 6th level. If the Ronin already has this feat, he may choose a Combat Feat instead, but only if he meets the prerequisites of that feat.

Iaijutsu (Ex): When a 7th level Ronin has the Edge on an opponent, he may take an Attack of Opportunity against that opponent as an immediate action when ever the opponent tries to move, even a 5 ft step, and once per turn in general. example: Lasserine, a Kensai Ronin, takes an Attack of Opportunity to make an attack when she normally could not. such as an extra at the end or start of a Full Attack, or after a full movement. Then in addition, her target tries to take a 5 ft step, she may then make another attack of opportunity. All this, so long as she has the Edge.

Favored Weapon:At 8th level, a Ronin gets Favored Weapon as a bonus feat.

Katana Specialization:At 8th level, a Ronin gets Weapon Specialization as a bonus feat.

Parry Magic (Su): At 8th level, a Ronin may use his Ancestral Weapon to parry magic targeted at him. When the Samurai is targeted by a spell or supernatural ability, he may take an SRD:Attack of Opportunity against the targeted effect. If he can make an attack roll against an AC equal to the spell or effect's DC with this Attack of Opportunity, the effect does not affect him.

Subtle Cut: A Ronin gains Subtle Cut as a bonus feat at 9th level. If the Ronin already has this feat, he may choose another Combat Feat instead, but only if he meets the prerequisites of that feat.

Blade of Devastation (Su): At 10th level, the Ronin may attack enemies within his reach through objects and walls, his Ancestral Weapon automatically destroying any unattended object or wall in the way with a Hardness less than 20. As a result, enemies do not gain cover bonuses against an attacking Ronin. This effect can also pierce force effects.

As a standard action, he can also destroy unattended objects of any Hardness with a successful Ancestral weapon attack, or dispel up to a 10' by 10' section of a [force] effect.

Wholeness of Body At 11th level or higher, a Ronin can heal her own wounds. She can heal a number of hit points of damage equal to twice her current Ronin level each day, and she can spread this healing out among several uses.

Iaijutsu Focus (Ex): At 11th level, a Ronin may make up to his per round limit of Attacks of Opportunity against any opponent(s) that he threatens as an immediate action.

Greater Katana Focus:At 12th level, a Ronin gets Greater Weapon Focus

Cut Magic (Su): At 12th level, a Ronin may attack ongoing spell effects by attacking the square they are in for Area of Effect effects or the object or person for targeted effects (which does damage as normal to the object or person). This attack is handled like the Ronin's Parry Magic ability, but it only dispels a 10' by 10' section of an Area of Effect spell or spell-like ability.

Deny Caster Defenses (Ex): At 13th level, a Ronin attacking with his Ancestral Weapon ignores any AC bonuses on his targets that come from spells or spell-like abilities.

Greater Katana Specialization:At 14th level, a Ronin gets Greater Weapon Specialization.

Final Cut (Ex): At 14th level, a Ronin's Ancestral Weapon gains the Vorpal special quality, even if it is not a slashing weapon.

Iaijutsu Master (Ex): At 15th level, any enemy struck by a Ronin's Attacks of Opportunity must make a Fortitude save against a DC equal to 10 + 0.5 ½ the Samurai's HD + the Ronin's Wisdom bonus or be dazed for one round. A successful save against this effect makes the enemy immune to this effect for five rounds.

Reflect Magic (Su): At 16th level, an spell effect that would be dispelled by a successful use of the Ronin's Parry Magic ability can instead be reflected back on the caster, as per a spell turning effect.

Blade of Souls:At 17th level, a Ronin gets Blade of Souls ability, allowing him to call his ancestral weapon to his hand as a free action.

Deny Armor (Su): At 18th level, a Ronin attacking with his Ancestral Weapon ignores any AC bonuses on his targets that come from armor or natural armor.

Fighting Spirit(Ex): At 19th level a Ronin's fighting spirit fills him with strength. He gains 10 DR/Alignment

Iaijutsu Grandmaster (Ex): At 20th level, any Attack of Opportunity made by the Ronin is automatically a confirmed critical hit.

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