General Prestige Class : Topaz Guardian
No evil that crawls on or below the face of the earth is the equal of our true and righteous wrath. Be resolute, be determined, be relentless in your pursuit of creatures that enslave or devour human beings. This is a war of extermination, and failure is unthinkable. - Jasminder Aree, Grand Sunwarden
The Holy Order of the Supernal Topaz Defenders (or the Topaz Order, for short) is an organization of righteous knights, clerics, and champions united in the defense of humankind and its allies from the threat of unhuman monstrosities. While it opposes all intelligent races that prey on humanity, the order reserves its special hatred for creatures that use mind-affecting magic to dominate and enslave humans and other good-aligned humanoids.
Followers of Heironeous, members of the order comprise an elite band of warriors. Resolute crusaders, the topaz guardians are the elite initiates of the order. They boldly confront unhuman predators such as mind flayers, beholders, aboleths, and neogi, their spies and agents, and any beings allied with the monsters, seeking to exterminate the creatures at every opportunity. Other aberrations with similarly monstrous and evil schemes also have the enmity of the Topaz Order. If mind flayers or aboleths aren't close at hand, topaz guardians are more than willing to seek our and destroy the outposts of aboleths, beholders, tsochari, and like creatures.
The Topaz Order is so named because its emblem is a brilliant oval yellow topaz on a field of cobalt blue. The topaz symbolizes protection, resolve, and the sun, and is always used in the creation of the topaz diadems for which the order is renowned.
While the Topaz Order includes a number of good-aligned fighters, clerics, monks, and paladins, only a few of these stalwarts pursue the path of the topaz guardian. Most topaz guardians are paladins, monks, or fighter/clerics. A human paladin with a decent Intelligence score has the easiest time qualifying for the class.
An applicant must be a skillful warrior, strong of will, with keen perception, experience in underground exploration and movement, and the ability to shake off effects that would leave other characters stunned and unable to act. As with any combat-oriented character, he'll find that high Strength, Constitution, and Dexterity serve him well in this prestige class. In addition, he'll most likely want at least one exceptional mental characteristic: Intelligence for the skill points, Wisdom for perception and mental resistance, or Charisma to obtain the best benefit of divine grace (if he is a paladin).
To qualify to become a Topaz Guardian, a character must fulfill all the following criteria:
- Alignment: Any good
- Skills: Knowledge (dungeoneering) 4 ranks, Sense Motive 4 ranks, Spot 2 ranks
- Feats: Quick Recovery,
- Base Attack Bonus: +5
Base Will Save: +3 OR divine grace class feature.
- Special: Must be sponsored by an existing member and approved by a High Sunwarden of the order.
Skill Points at Each Level: 2 + Int modifier.
All of the following are class features of the topaz guardian prestige class.
Spellcasting: At 2nd, 4th, and 5th levels, 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 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 spellcasting class before becoming a topaz guardian, you must decide to which class to add each level for the purpose of determining spells per day, caster level, and spells known.
Topaz Diadem: All topaz guardians are given a topaz diadem as a symbol of their devotion and a shield against their foes. The diadem is a sturdy headband of finely tooled leather, with a large yellow topaz set in its center. See the sidebar on this page for a description of the topaz diadem's effects.
At 3rd level, the sacred bonuses offered by the diadem increase to +2. At 5th level, the bonuses increase to +3.
Topaz diadems function only for members of the topaz guardian prestige class. If your diadem is lost or destroyed, you can obtain another one from the order at a cost of 6,000 gp and after a wait of twelve days.
Smite Aberration (Su): Beginning at 2nd level, you can attempt to smite an aberration once per day with one normal melee attack. You add your Charisma bonus (if any) to your attack roll and deal an extra 2 points of damage per topaz guardian class level. If you smite a creature that is not an aberration, the smite has no effect, but the ability is still used up for the day. At 4th level, you can attempt to smite aberrations twice per day.
Hard to Hold (Ex): Beginning at 3rd level, you learn how to wriggle free of the deadly tentacles that are so common among aberrations and other psionics-using creatures. You gain a bonus equal to your class level on all grapple checks to resist or escape from a grapple.
The Topaz Diadem
All topaz guardians wear a magic headband known as a topaz diadem. A diadem confers a +1 sacred bonus to AC and a +1 sacred bonus on saving throws against attacks made by or effects created by evil creatures. It also blocks any attempt to possess the wearer or to exercise mental control over the wearer by means of enchantment (charm) or enchantment (compulsion) effects, as described in the spell protection from evil. (Some enchantment spells, such as hold person, do not require the caster to actively exercise mental control, and therefore still work against the wearer of a diadem.) Unlike the spell, a diadem offers no protection against summoned creatures.
Diadems are created for members of the Topaz Order, and function only for characters of the topaz guardian prestige class. As a wearer gains levels in the topaz guardian prestige class, his topaz diadem likewise grows more powerful.
Moderate abjuration; CL 9th; Craft Wondrous Item, bless, magic circle against evil, creator must be a member of the Topaz Order; Price 12,000 gp.
|Topaz Guardian||Hit Die: d8|
|1st||+1||+2||+0||+2||Topaz diadem +1||-|
|2nd||+2||+3||+0||+3||Smite aberration 1/day||+1 level of existing spellcasting class|
|3rd||+3||+3||+1||+3||Topaz diadem +2, hard to hold||-|
|4th||+4||+4||+1||+4||Smite aberration 2/day||+1 level of existing spellcasting class|
|5th||+5||+4||+1||+4||Topaz diadem +3||+1 level of existing spellcasting class|
Topaz Guardian Lore
The Topaz Order is closely affiliated with the church of Heironeous. Characters who succeed on a Knowledge (religion) check can learn the following information, including the information from lower DCs.
- DC 10: "The church of Heironeous sponsors a knightly order known as the Topaz Order."
- DC 15: "Knights of the Topaz Order are dedicated to fighting evil monsters such as mind flayers or aboleths. Members of the Topaz Order work to organize the defenses of humankind against these monsters, and they mount expeditions to go underground and burn out any outposts they find."
- DC 20: "The elite champions of the Topaz Order are known as topaz guardians. Each one carries a special topaz diadem, a magic gem that protects him against evil magic. They're experts in fighting mind flayers and other aberrations."
- DC 30: Characters who achieve this level of success learn important details about specific guardians, their exploits, and their enemies.
Source: Lords of Madness