Faerûnian Prestige Class : Mage-Killer
Mage-killers are a rare breed. They master magic designed for combat against other spellcasters. They learn not only combat skills such as might be taught to a warrior, but also spells that target the weaknesses of their foes. Some use traps, others use weapons, but all hone their magical skills to a fine point, for it is those skills that distinguish them from the usual run of hunters and killers. They develop friendships with the sorts of people who can lead them to their foes, but the dirty business of overcoming those foes they take upon their own shoulders.
Most mage-killers are essentially bounty hunters specializing in a particular sort of prey. Some, however, follow such a path out of religious conviction. Ironically, followers of both Azuth and Shar use mage-killers in the pursuit of their respective deity's aims. The church of Azuth believes in the responsible use of magic. This prevents others not gifted in the Art from treating all spellcasters as enemies, but also preserves the very Weave itself. Azuth's followers usually first offer a warning to any spellcaster who abuses the powers he possesses. Failing that, however, they increase the response, until at last they are forced to send a mage-killer to defeat the reckless spellcaster.
Shar's followers, of course, concern themselves with the Weave only insofar as it affects the Shadow Weave. Their mage-killers instead seek out prominent Weave users and kill them publicly as a warning to those who oppose their deity and as a demonstration of the power of the Shadow Weave. Through such means, Shar's followers hope to weaken Mystra's power over magic. So far, her followers have had little success in weakening Mystra's might, since the sorts of spells they prefer are not all so well suited to overcoming other spellcasters. What mages they have killed were as often as not taken down by her deadly Dark Moon sorcerer-monks. But if they seem, on the surface, less well suited to the task of killing other spellcasters, their fanatical devotion to their deity's cause more than makes up for it.
To qualify to become a Mage-Killer, a character must fulfill all the following criteria:
- Skills: Spellcraft 10 ranks.
- Feats: Great Fortitude, Lightning Reflexes, Combat Casting, Martial Weapon Proficiency (any).
- Spellcasting: Ability to cast 4th-level arcane. or divine spells. Ability to cast at least three spells that require Fortitude saves and at least three spells that require Reflex saves. (A spell that inflicts damage but allows no saving throw can substitute for any of these required spells.)
Skill Points at Each Level: 2 + Int modifier.
All the following are class features of the mage-killer prestige class.
Weapon and Armor Proficiency: Mage-killers gain no proficiency with any weapon or armor.
Spells per Day: A mage-killer's training focuses on magic. Thus, when a character gains a new level of mage-killer, she gains new spells per day as if she had also gained a level in whatever spellcasting class she belonged to before she added the prestige class. She does not, however, gain any other benefit a character of that class would have gained (improved chance of controlling or rebuking undead, metamagic or item creation feats, and so on).
If a character had more than one spellcasting class before she became a mage-killer, she must decide to which class she adds each level of mage-killer for purposes of determining spells per day when she adds the new level.
Improved Saves: The mage-killer learns to improve his resistance to the very sorts of spells he uses against others. At 1st level and every odd-numbered level thereafter, he gains a +1 bonus on either his Fortitude or Reflex save. These bonuses stack.
Augment Summoning: At 2nd level, the character gains the Augment Summoning feat.
Spell Focus feat: At 4th level, the character gains a bonus Spell Focus feat in one of the following schools: Conjuration, Evocation, Necromancy, or Transmutation. Every even-numbered level thereafter, the character gains another bonus Spell Focus feat in one of these schools, until at 10th level the mage-killer has Spell Focus for all four schools listed.
|Mage-Killer||Hit Die: d4|
|CL||BAB||Fort||Ref||Will||Special||Spells per day|
|1st||+0||+0||+0||+2||Improved saves||+1 level of existing class|
|2nd||+1||+0||+0||+3||Augment summoning||+1 level of existing class|
|3rd||+1||+1||+1||+3||Improved saves||+1 level of existing class|
|4th||+2||+1||+1||+4||Spell Focus||+1 level of existing class -|
|5th||+2||+1||+1||+4||Improved saves||+1 level of existing class|
|6th||+3||+2||+2||+5||Spell Focus||+1 level of existing class|
|7th||+3||+2||+2||+5||Improved saves||+1 level of existing class|
|8th||+4||+2||+2||+6||Spell Focus||+1 level of existing class|
|9th||+4||+3||+3||+6||Improved saves||+1 level of existing class|
|10th||+5||+3||+3||+7||Spell Focus feat||+1 level of existing class|
The epic mage-killer is a terrifying opponent and is legendary in her ability to bring enemy spellcasters to their knees. Though any given order might count only a tiny number of these characters among them, even the rumor of a single hunter of this power is enough to guard against the abuse of magic.
Spell Stowaway is a great way to take advantage of your opponents' powers. Energy Resistance helps bolster your ability to weather potent attacks. Epic Spell Focus goes well with your many Spell Focus feats, and you can't beat Epic Counterspell for its sheer utility against enemy spellcasters.
As with any spellcaster, your ability increases should boost your spellcasting power (Intelligence, Charisma, or Wisdom). Dexterity helps avoid damage, while Constitution increases your ability to weather it.
Other Options: Boost your combat effectiveness with Epic Prowess. If you're worried about your saves, pick up Epic Fortitude or Epic Reflexes.
Hit Die: d4.
Skill Points at Each Additional Level: 2 + Int modifier.
Spells: The epic mage-killer's caster level increases by 1 per level gained above 10th. The epic mage-killer's number of spells per day does not increase after 10th level, unless the sum of his class levels contributing to his caster level equals 20 or less.
Improved Saves (Ex): At every odd-numbered level, the mage-killer gains a +1 bonus on either his Fortitude or his Reflex save. These bonuses stack.
Bonus Feats: The epic mage-killer gains a bonus feat (selected from the list of epic mage-killer feats) every 3 levels after 10th.
Epic Mage-Killer Bonus Feat List: Automatic Quicken Spell, Automatic Silent Spell, Automatic Still Spell, Energy Resistance, Enhance Spell, Epic Counterspell (new feat; see below), Epic Fortitude, Epic Prowess, Epic Reflexes, Epic Spell Focus, Epic Spell Penetration, Epic Spellcasting, Familiar Spell, Ignore Material Components, Improved Combat Casting, Improved Heighten Spell, Improved Metamagic, Improved Spell Capacity, Intensify Spell, Multispell, Permanent Emanation, Spell Knowledge, Spell Opportunity, Spell Stowaway, Spontaneous Spell, Tenacious Magic.
|13th||Improved saves, bonus feat|
|19th||Improved saves, bonus feat|
Source: Magic of Faerûn