Vacuus Manus Assassin (3.5e Prestige Class)
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Vacuus Manus Assassin
Vacuus - Empty, devoid Manus - Hand
A Vacuus Manus Assassin recognizes that their mind provides him with the only weapon he will ever need: the Mind Blade. A Soulknife that has chosen this path may do so for many reasons. Some chose this path to profit. Some to fight for good and retribution against evil. Some simply for the thrill of the kill. Some, to test their skills against opponents that will challenge their abilities. Most, of course, to make it known that their mind should be feared as the most lethal weapon in the land.
Vacuus Manus Assassins tend to take their work very seriously. Most of these Assassins have no problem grouping with others for a common cause... mostly because it gives them a chance to show-off, but may take issue with another Mind Blade-wielding individual within the party. Vacuus Manus' typically do not deal in magic, as they feel it would detract from the power of their Mind Blade. Also, due to their superiority complexes, they are not particularly as good at resolving conflicts as they are at 'ending' them.
Feats: Improved Critical
Skills: Hide (10 ranks), Move Silently (10 ranks)
Special: Must complete 10 levels of Soulknife to become a Vacuus Manus Assassin
|1st||+0||+0||+2||+0||Soulknife Abilities, Improved Shape Mind Blade, Uncanny Dodge, Sneak Attack +1d6|
|2nd||+1||+0||+3||+0||Two-Blade Fighting, Critical Eye +1, Evasion|
|3rd||+2||+1||+3||+1||Sneak Attack +2d6, Low-Light Vision 60’|
|4th||+3||+1||+4||+1||Improved Uncanny Dodge, Study the Prey|
|5th||+3||+1||+4||+1||Sneak Attack +3d6, Critical Eye +2, Mind Blade Defense|
|6th||+4||+2||+5||+2||Hide in Plain Sight, Bleed the Prey|
|7th||+5||+2||+5||+2||Sneak Attack +4d6|
|8th||+6/+1||+2||+6||+2||Critical eye +3, Cripple the Prey|
|9th||+6/+1||+3||+6||+3||Sneak Attack +5d6, Improved Evasion|
|10th||+7/+2||+3||+7||+3||End the Prey, Blindside|
|Class Skills (6 + Int modifier per level)|
The Vacuus Manus Assassin’s class skills and the key ability for each skill are Balance (Dex), Bluff (Cha), Climb (Str), Disable Device (Int), Disguise (Cha), Escape Artist (Dex), Gather Information (Cha), Hide (Dex), Intimidate (Cha), Jump (Str), Listen (Wis), Move Silently (Dex), Open Lock (Dex), Search (Int), Sense Motive (Wis), Sleight of Hand (Dex), Spot (Wis), Swim (Str), Tumble (Dex), and Use Rope (Dex).
All the following are class features of the Vacuus Manus Assassin:
Soulknife Abilities: A Vacuus Manus Assassin may add their class levels to their Soulknife levels to determine Mind Blade enhancement bonus, feats gained, and psychic strike damage. However, they may not add their levels for weapon ability enhancements.
Improved Shape Mind Blade (Su): The Vacuus Manus Assassin may now manifest their Mind Blade as any weapon or, weapons if dual-wielding, without taking a full round to do so. Both weapons retain full enhancement bonuses.
Uncanny Dodge (Ex): Starting at 1st level, an assassin retains his Dexterity bonus to AC (if any) regardless of being caught flat-footed or struck by an invisible attacker. (He still loses any Dexterity bonus to AC if immobilized.)
Sneak Attack: If the assassin can catch an opponent when he is unable to defend himself effectively from the attack, they can strike a vital spot for extra damage. The attack deals extra damage any time her target would be denied a Dexterity bonus to AC (whether the target actually has a Dexterity bonus or not), or when the assassin flanks the target. This extra damage is 1d6 at 1st level, and it increases by 1d6 every two rogue levels thereafter. Should they score a critical hit with a sneak attack, this extra damage is not multiplied. Ranged attacks can count as sneak attacks only if the target is within 30 feet. An assassin can sneak attack only living creatures with discernible anatomies—undead, constructs, oozes, plants, and incorporeal creatures lack vital areas to attack. Any creature that is immune to critical hits is not vulnerable to sneak attacks. They must be able to see the target well enough to pick out a vital spot and must be able to reach such a spot. An assassin cannot sneak attack while striking a creature with concealment or striking the limbs of a creature whose vitals are beyond reach.
Two-Blade Fighting: At 2nd level, the assassin gains the Two-Weapon Fighting feat, even if he does not meet the prerequisites. He loses this benefit if he wields a weapon other than Mind Blade daggers or if he wears a shield or armor heavier than light.
Critical Eye (Ex): Starting at 2nd level, an assassin increases the critical range by 1 (one) on the weapons used by the assassin. For example, a dagger with a critical range of 20 would become 19-20. This ability increases to 2 (two) at 5th level, and 3 (three) at 8th level. Note: The critical range bonuses from the Improved Critical feat are added before Critical Eye.
Evasion (Ex): At 2nd level and higher, an assassin can avoid even magical and unusual attacks with great agility. If he makes a successful Reflex saving throw against an attack that normally deals half damage on a successful save, he instead takes no damage. The assassin loses this benefit if he wields a weapon other than daggers or if he wears a shield or armor heavier than light. A helpless assassin does not gain the benefit of evasion.
Low-Light Vision (Ex): All assassins train in darkness due to their affinity with the shadows. As a result, an assassin gains low-light vision. If he already has low-light vision, he may choose to gain darkvision with a range of 60 feet or to double the effectiveness of his low-light vision. If he already has darkvision and low-light vision, he may instead choose to retain a semblance of color in his darkvision.
Improved Uncanny Dodge (Ex): An assassin of 4th level or higher can no longer be flanked. This defense denies another rogue the ability to sneak attack the character by flanking her, unless the attacker has at least four more rogue 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 rogue level required to flank the character.
Study the Prey (Ex): Starting at 4th level, an assassin may spend 3 rounds studying their targets, single or multiple (up to the assassin’s Intelligence Modifier). If they do so, upon entering combat the assassin is granted a +3 insight bonus to attack and damage rolls against the observed targets, as well as a +3 insight bonus to AC for the duration of the encounter. This effect may not be stacked with Bleed, Cripple, or End the Prey.
Mind Blade Defense (Ex): At 5th level, the assassin has practiced using his Mind Blade so much that he can quickly block any attack made against him. As long as the assassin has at least one Mind Blade drawn, he gains a +2 shield bonus to AC. He gains an additional +2 bonus if he has two Mind Blades drawn. The assassin gains this benefit even if he is flat-footed, so long as he has at least one dagger drawn and his arms have the mobility to move the daggers to block attacks (thus, if he is paralyzed or immobilized, he loses the bonus). However, the assassin loses the benefits of this ability if he is wearing medium or heavy armor or wielding a shield, or if wielding any Mind Blade larger than a weapon that qualifies as a dagger.
Hide in Plain Sight (Su): At 6th level, an assassin can use the Hide skill even while being observed. As long as he is within 10 feet of some sort of shadow, an assassin can hide himself from view in the open without having anything to actually hide behind. He cannot, however, hide in his own shadow.
Bleed the Prey (Ex): Starting at 6th level, an assassin may spend 3 rounds studying a single target. For the duration of the encounter, any successful attacks that the assassin makes against the target deal an additional 1d4 damage in blood loss. Additionally, at the end of each round, including the round an attack is received, the target must make a Fortitude save (DC= 10 + Assassin’s class levels + Assassin’s Int modifier) or take an additional 1 point of damage per open wound. The target may suffer multiple bleeding wounds, all dealing damage. A single Fortitude Save will stop the bleeding from all wounds, but does not stop bleeding from future wounds. A new Fort save must be made for any new wounds. This effect may not be stacked with Study, Cripple, or End the Prey.
Cripple the Prey (Ex): Starting at 8th level, an assassin may spend 3 rounds studying a single target. For the duration of the duration of the encounter, any successful critical attacks do 1 point of Strength, Dexterity, or Constitution damage, on top of normal damage. This effect may not be stacked with Study, Bleed, or End the Prey.
Improved Evasion (Ex): When making a reflex save against an area attack, improved evasion causes a successful save to take no damage and a filed save to only take half.
End the Prey (Ex): Starting at 10th level, an assassin may spend 3 rounds studying a single target. For the duration of the duration of the encounter, any successful critical attacks will force the target to make a Fortitude save (DC= 10 + Assassin’s Class Level + Assassin’s Int Modifier) or die. The assassin may elect to paralyze the target rather than killing it, but this must be declared before the attack roll is made. The same Fortitude save is required for the paralyzing effect. This effect may not be stacked with Study, Bleed, or Cripple the Prey.
Blindside (Ex): Starting at 10th level, once per encounter, if an assassin spends 3 rounds studying a single target, he may use a full round action and attempt three sneak attacks on that target upon entering combat. All three attacks get the extra damage dice and count as a sneak attack.