Tuesday, January 22, 2013

The Ranger Class

Goblin-hunter, giant-killer, dragon-slayer: these are rangers.  They are independent, cunning, and experienced in fighting the monstrous creatures that prey on civilization.  They live in the frontiers and borderlands, protecting gentler lands by hunting threats in the wilderness.

Hit Dice: 1d6+2 (+3 hp per level after 9th level.)
Armor: Any light or medium armor, shields.
Weapons: Any weapon.
Skills: Feats of endurance and dexterity, climbing, natural lore, perception, stealth, swimming, survival, and tracking.

Self-Sufficient: Rangers, by temperament and training, do not rely on others.  They do not adventure with more than two other rangers, and do not keep more wealth than they can easily carry.  Fellowships often include more than three rangers, but they spread their protection out over a large area, and do not travel together.

Class Features
Alertness: Rangers have only a 1 in 6 chance of being surprised.

Ambush: A ranger can create an ambush, increasing the chance of surprising an opponent.  This takes one round per party member, and adds 1 to the chance of surprising the opponent.  Characters that are have knacks or skills in hiding or sneaking do not add to the preparation time.  The ambush is stationary and the targets must move into it.

Opponents that are expecting a fight, and would not ordinarily be surprised, instead have a 1 in 6 chance of being surprised, at the GM’s discretion. 

Keen-Eyed: Rangers have advantage on perception and tracking checks.

Implacable Foe: A ranger has a +1 on rolls against the humanoid races (bugbears, gnolls, goblins, hobgoblins, kobolds, ogres, and orcs) at 1st level. This applies to saves, checks (i.e. tracking or surprise), attack rolls, and damage rolls. This increases to +2 at 5th level, and includes giants and trolls.  At 9th level the bonus becomes +3, and includes dragons.

Whether or not the bonus applies is at the GM’s discretion.  It is reasonable to apply it to a save versus a goblin trap in a goblin lair, but not against a trap in a thieves’ guild that includes goblins as members.

Marksman: A ranger adds his Dexterity bonus to his to-hit roll with ranged weapons.

Far Shot: At 3rd level, the range on a ranger’s missile weapons increases by 50%.

Woodland Stride: At 3rd level, the ranger moves at his normal movement rate through non-magical wilderness, including undergrowth and other hindrances, and cannot be tracked except by a ranger of higher level.

Companion: At 7th level the ranger gains a companion.  This might be a 1st level ranger, or an animal companion. If the companion dies, another will replace him the next time the ranger gains a level, depending on the circumstances surrounding the death of the previous companion(s). 

Swift: At 7th level the ranger’s speed increases by either +10 feet per round or +3, depending on the rule system.

Fellowship: At 9th level the ranger attracts a small band of like-minded allies and companions to aid and assist him.  Intelligent animals, monsters, and various player-character races are all possible members of the fellowship.

Deadeye: Once per day at 11th level the ranger can make a careful, steady attack on a foe.  For each full round he spends aiming, the ranger gets a +2 bonus to hit, to a maximum of +6 at three rounds.  In addition, he does double damage after the first round of aiming, triple damage after the second round, and quadruple damage after the third round.
The ranger cannot move while aiming, and the target must be visible, within range, and not moving faster than a walk.  Any damage to the ranger while he is aiming disrupts his attack. 

(The terms advantageknack, and skilled are defined on the Game Design page above.  The license for this entry is located in the Legal page above.)

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