Monster Prestige Class : Dragon - Disciple Of Ashardalon
The ancient red dragon Ashardalon, when struck a mortal blow by a human druid, replaced his wounded heart with a living demon: a balor of enormous power named Ammet, the Eater of Souls. Inspired by this example, disciples of Ashardalon bind fiendish spirits to their own hearts, eventually taking on the characteristics of demonic spawn themselves. Disciples of Ashardalon do not really worship the ancient dragon, nor do they literally learn directly from him as the word "disciple" implies, but they regard Ashardalon as the great exemplar of their path and seek to emulate him in every way possible.
Dragons of any class or none can qualify for the disciple of Ashardalon prestige class. Those with a religious or arcane leaning who have pursued specialized knowledge are most likely to follow this course. Even the most martially minded evil dragons, though, often find enough to inspire them in Ashardalon's example that they adopt this class.
Disciples of Ashardalon are members of an organization, loose-knit and secretive though it may be. Of necessity they have some contact with other members of the order, but their overwhelming personal ambition means they rarely cooperate with one another in pursuit of their various evil schemes. They are likely to make use of various minions, particularly those of a fiendish character, in pursuit of their plans, rather than rely on the cooperation of equals. Like their evil exemplar, they are often served by deluded cults made up of evil humanoids or even undead. Both they and their cultists contemplate plans of sweeping evil grandeur-seizing power, leveling kingdoms, reclaiming or destroying ancient artifacts, and the like. They are thus particularly well suited for use in campaigns of epic scope and, quite likely epic level.
To qualify to become a Disciple of Ashardalon, a character must fulfill all the following criteria:
- Race: Any dragon
- Alignment: Any evil.
- Skills: Knowledge (religion) 18 ranks, Knowledge (the planes) 18 ranks
- Feats: Iron Will, Quicken Spell-like Ability,
- Base Attack Bonus: +18.
- Special: Initiation: Before adopting the prestige class, a dragon must join the loose-knit cult of other disciples and undergo its initiation rites. This process includes the ritual scarring of the dragon's heart - an extremely dangerous practice that would claim the life of a dragon too weak to qualify for the class, and leaves even those that do robbed of 1 point of Constitution. (Dragons that progress to at least 6th level in this class regain the lost Constitution point eventually).
The disciple of Ashardalon's class skills are Concentration, Hide, Intimidate, Knowledge (arcana), Knowledge (religion), Knowledge (the planes), Listen, Move Silently, Search, Sense Motive, Spellcraft, and Spot.
Skill Points at Each Level: 4 + Int modifier.
The following are Class Features of the disciple of Ashardalon prestige class:
Weapon and Armor Proficiency: A disciple of Ashardalon gains no proficiency with any weapons, armor, or shields.
Fiendbond (Su): As part of its initiation, a disciple of Ashardalon binds a demonic spirit to its own heart, emulating the manner in which Ashardalon himself took a balor as his heart. The dragon's alignment changes to chaotic evil if it was not already of that alignment. The dragon gains bonus sorcerer spells as if its Charisma score were 2 points higher than actual.
Resistance (Ex): A disciple Ashardalon gains resistance to acid, cold, electricity, and fire. This resistance is 5 at 1st level, and increases by 5 at 4th level and every four level thereafter (10 at 4th level, 15 at 8th level, and 20 at 12th level).
Spell-Like Abilities: A disciple of Ashardalon gains spell-like abilities as it increases in level. Its caster level is equal to its class level, and its saving throw DCs are 10 + its Cha modifier + spell level. Once an ability is gained, the disciple can use it a certain number of times per day as follows: 3/day - darkness, poison, unholy aura; 1/day - blasphemy, contagion, desecrate, destruction, horrid wilting, unhallow, unholy aura, unholy blight.
Skill Point Increase: At 2nd level, and again at 10th level, a disciple of Ashardalon gains a pool of bonus skill points equal to the number of dragon Hit Dice it possesses. This pool represents a gradual transition from being a creature of the dragon type (with 6 skill points per HD) to being an outsider (with 8 skill points per HD). These bonus skill points are in addition to the skill points gained at every level, and are not modified by the dragon's Intelligence score.
Ability Increase: Every three levels, a disciple of Ashardalon's ability scores increase automatically At 3rd, 6th, 9th, and 12th level, its Strength, Dexterity, and Intelligence all increase by 1 point. At 6th and 12th level, its Constitution and Charisma also increase by 1 point. By 12th level, a disciple of Ashardalon has the ability score adjustments of the half-fiend template.
Poison Immunity (Ex): A disciple of Ashardalon of 6th level or higher is immune to all forms of poison.
Natural Armor Increase (Ex): At 7th level, a disciple of Ashrdalon's natural armor bonus improves by 1.
Fiendish Perfection (Ex): At 12th level, a disciple of Ashardalon's bond with its demonic spirit is complete and perfect. The dragon now has the half-fiend template and becomes an outsider rather than a dragon.
|disciple of Ashardalon||Hit Die: d8|
|1st||+1||+2||+0||+2||Fiendbond, resistance 5, darkness|
|2nd||+2||+3||+0||+3||Desecrate, skill point increase|
|3rd||+3||+3||+1||+3||Unholy blight, ability increase (Str, Dex, Int)|
|4th||+4||+4||+1||+4||Resistance 10, poison|
|6th||+6||+5||+2||+5||Poison immunity, blasphemy, ability increase (Str, Dex, Con, Int, Cha)|
|7th||+7||+5||+2||+5||Unhallow, natural armor increase|
|8th||+8||+6||+2||+6||Resistance 15, unholy aura|
|9th||+9||+6||+3||+6||Horrid wilting, ability increase (Str, Dex, Int)|
|10th||+10||+7||+3||+7||Skill point increase|
|12th||+12||+8||+4||+8||Resistance 20, ability increase (Str, Dex, Con, Int, Cha), fiendish perfection|