The Anarchy of King Stephen
Sages are masters of hidden knowledge. They spend their days poring over dry, dusty books and studying at the feet of remote masters in order to glean small hints of what the underlying Truth of the universe is. Through their studies, sages unlock the secrets of magic long-suppressed by the Catholic Church.
A sage might be a scholar, alchemist, or learned man. A sage might be a priest, village wise woman, hermit or monk. A sage might be an ascetic or an apothecary or a witch woman of the woods. What is certain is that the sage has a vast knowledge of the world and its workings, and even knows hints of lost, forbidden and heretical lore.
A sage wants to have high INT and ACU scores, as these affect the sage’s spellcasting. Like all characters, a sage benefits from a high CON.
Prerequisites: INT +0, ACU +0
1st Level HP: 6 + CON
Hit Die: d4
Skill Tree: 2-up
1st level bonus: Sages at character level 1 gain a +2 inherent bonus to Composure saves.
Weapon and Armor proficiencies: Sages are proficient with no armors. Sages with Melee are proficient with simple melee weapons; Sages with Brawl are proficient with small simple melee weapons; Sages with Archery are proficient with crossbows; Sages with Thrown are proficient with daggers and short spears.
Spellcasting: Sages follow the rules for Spellcasting. Their prepared spells per day are listed on the table; they gain bonus spells for having a high INT. A sage’s spell DC is equal to 10 + ACU + the spell’s level.
Sages start play with a spellbook containing four cantrips and three 1st-level spells, chosen from the Spell List. Their spellbook contains a number of additional spells equal to their INT, divided up amongst cantrips and 1st-level spells as the sage sees fit.
Each time the sage gains a new level, she may add two new spells to her spellbook, chosen from the spell list. These new spells may be of any level the sage can prepare. This addition represents individual study on the sage’s part.
Coming by additional spells in the Kingdom of Wessex is very difficult. There are no magic stores; a character might be able to apply for membership at a university and thereby gain access to more spells, or perhaps persuade his master for additional spells, or offer an exchange with other (PC or NPC) spellcasters. Other than that, however, a sage may only gain new spells through finding or capturing other spellbooks, or performing spell research on his own.
Bonus feat: Sages gain a bonus feat at levels 2, 6 and 10. These bonus feats may be any feat for which the sage qualifies.
The sage gains a talent every odd-numbered level. At first and third levels, he may select from the Animagus or Loremaster trees; at fifth level and up, he may begin to select from the Aspect of Power tree. Talents must be selected in order, but the sage may switch between trees at his discretion.
Form of the Meek (Su): When selecting this talent, the sage chooses one tiny or diminutive vermin or animal. The sage gains the ability to assume this form for one round per day per class level. While in this form, the sage cannot speak or cast spells, and is in all physical regards a typical example of the form assumed. These rounds can be spent consecutively, or broken up as the sage sees fit. Changing to and from the Form of the Meek is a full-round action. If the form ends while the sage is in a space too small to accomodate his normal size, the sage is shunted to the nearest open space, taking 1d6 damage per 5’ shunted.
Form of the Companion (Su): As Form of the Meek, except the sage chooses one small animal or vermin. Form of the Meek and Form of the Companion share duration, but the total duration of both abilities increases to one minute per level per day.
Form of the Beast (Su): As Form of the Meek, except the sage chooses one medium animal. Form of the Meek, Form of the Companion and Form of the Beast share duration, but the total duration of all abilities increases to one turn per level per day.
Lore (Ex): The sage has done a great deal of reading and studying of topics various and sundry, and is able to call upon this information at a moment’s notice. The sage is considered trained in all Knowledges, even those specialties he doesn’t have selected, and may make Knowledge checks in non-selected specialties as though they were Tier 0 skills.
Stratagem (Ex): The sage is able to call upon his knowledge to assist him or his allies in overcoming adverse situations. Once per encounter, the sage may make a Knowledge check appropriate to the situation (in combat, the sage would make a Knowledge check appropriate to the creature type being fought; out of combat, the DM must adjudicate which Knowledge skill would come into play). The sage gains a circumstance bonus to attack rolls and skill checks as determined by the result of the roll:
This roll may only be made once per encounter, but the bonus conferred lasts until the end of the encounter. The sage may spend a full-round action relating his stratagem to his allies, which grants them half the bonus the sage has, likewise lasting until the end of the encounter.
Analysis (Su): The sage gains the ability to detect magic at will, but only out to 30’ and only within his line of sight. Additionally, if the sage is able to handle and study a magical item for one uninterrupted hour, the sage gains knowledge about the item as though he had cast an analyze dweomer spell on it.
Aspects of Power
Lesser Aspect of Power (Su): The sage chooses one of the following Lesser Aspects of Power. He may activate this aspect at will as a free action. Once the sage has made his choice, he may not change it.
- Distinct Voice: If he wishes, anyone within 100 feet may hear the sage, regardless of ambient noise. This works even if the sage is whispering.
- Glowing Footsteps: The sage’s footsteps glow with a faint but visible magical aura for one round. The sage chooses the color when taking this lesser aspect.
- Habitual Spell: The sage gains the ability to cast a single 0-level spell at will as though he had prepared it, without needing to have it prepared.
- Skeletal Visage: The sage’s bones glow briefly through his skin whenever he casts a spell.
- Sparkles: The sage may create a burst of sparkles anywhere within his space at any time. These sparkles are not bright enough to distract or dazzle.
- Glowing Eyes: The sage’s eyes glow a particular color.
Greater Aspect of Power (Su): As Lesser Aspect of Power. The sage may choose from the following list, or may choose another lesser aspect.
- Sustenance: The sage no longer needs to eat, drink or breathe; she gains all of her sustenance through magic.
- Display Power: The sage causes himself to appear larger and more impressive at will, gaining a +4 bonus to Intimidate checks.
- Innate Spell: As habitual spell, but the sage may choose a single 0- or 1st-level spell.
- Name of Power: The sage becomes aware whenever anyone speaks his name referring specificially to him. He learns the name of the speaker but not the speaker’s location or any other information about the speaker.
- Eschew Earth: The sage’s feet no longer touch the ground — he floats two inches above any surface. He cannot use this ability to fly or levitate, and it does not save him from falls, but it allows him to cross liquids or pressure plates, for example, without breaking through the surface. The sage must still use Acrobatics to cross exceptionally narrow surfaces. This ability does not affect the sage’s weight.
Master’s Aspect of Power (Su): As Greater Aspect of Power. The sage may choose from the following list, or may choose a lesser or greater aspect.
- Mystic Reflexes: The sage gains Evasion, Uncanny Dodge and a +2 bonus to Dodge and his Reflex defense as the magic within his body moves him from danger’s path without his conscious awareness.
- Skin of Stone: The sage’s skin takes on a rocky appearance and texture, similar to granite. He gains a Soak of 3 and a +3 bonus to Fortitude saves. Additionally, he gains the light fortification property.
- Divided Mind: The sage can sequester a portion of his mind. He gains a +3 bonus to Concentration checks and Composure saves. Additionally, once per day, he may reroll a failed Composure save.
- Magical Blood: The sage’s blood is replaced with magical energy. He is immune to poison and disease, and automatically stabilizes if bleeding out.
- Inherent Spell: As Habitual Spell, but the sage may choose a 0-, 1st- or 2nd-level spell.