Friday, September 12, 2008

Gunslinger: A 3.5 Homebrew Class

In honor of the current homebrew carnival going on hosted by Donny the DM, I thought I'd toss my two cents in with one of my homebrewed classes for 3.5 Dungeons and Dragons. The Gunslinger. I originally designed him for an Expedition to Castle Ravenloft game I was running since one of my players was eager to use guns. Here's what I came up with...

Where there are weapons, there are those who have mastered them. From sword-wielding warriors to dagger-throwing ninjas. For some however, a weapon is not just a tool, not just a blade or a bolt, but something more. A lifestyle. Such is the attitude of those who have taken and mastered the keen clockwork motions of the pistol, hidden and deadly. For this weapon master, bullets are his lifeblood, kickback is a graceful art, and the scent of gunpowder is what drives him onward. There is no keener eye and no deadlier bullet, then the Gunslinger.

Adventures: A gunslinger is driven by the desire to perfect himself. An adventure is seen as a challenge, and challenges are made to be overcome. Life is full of trials and gauntlets, all of which the gunslinger sees as opportunities to perfect himself and his skill. He will often think outside the box, trying to go around problems rather then confront them head-on. Gunslingers are careful planners and priceless companions.

Characteristics: Gunslingers are very limited in terms of weapons, typically wielding nothing beyond a pistol and both excelling and improving upon it. His skills allow him to improve upon and maintain his weapons as well as lending some aid in the dangers of a dungeon or in other such unique environments. Typically hailing from urban backgrounds, the gunslinger is not as adept to the wilderness as his distant cousin the ranger, using their knowledge best around machinery, architecture, engineering, and technology. An experienced gunslinger has deadly accuracy with his weapon, or weapons, as some gunslingers choose to focus on duel wielding revolvers.

Alignment: Gunslingers can be of any alignment, while some find profession as chaotic vigilantes defending the less fortunate, others use their skills to further their own gains. Still others work for elite bodyguard companies, or are hired as bloodhounds to track down criminals using their unique abilities. Evil gunslingers are a force to be feared, using their distant and deadly techniques much like an assassin who can take out a target from a half-mile away.

Religion: Gunslingers follow a variety of deities, but most commonly gunslingers follow either Moradin or Garl Glittergold. Moradin, as the god of smithing, metalworking, and engineering, is an obvious choice. Garl Glittergold is the chief patron of the gnomes who flock to this class because it utilizes one of their creations – the revolver. There is some debate over who designed firearms first, the gnomes or dwarves, though the common belief is that gnomes created the revolver.

Background: Most gunslingers gain their training through their craft, either as a blacksmith, alchemist, gunsmith or clockmaker. Combining these crafts gives the components needed to make a gun, and most artisans with the hope of adventuring will often craft and practice with a weapon of their own. Firearms are still considered rare, so not many mainstream adventurers use them, leaving the class primarily to those who can actually craft the weapons and bullets.

Races: Clearly, the most common races who come to this class are gnomes and dwarves, as they feel natural wielding the weapons their ancestors created. Humans however, also are drawn to the gunslinger class, further expanding their versatility. Half-Elves and Half-Orcs have been seen to wield the weapons as well, though halflings find them to cumbersome and elves find them to unnatural, though there’s a first time for everything…

Classes: Gunslingers get along well with most classes, though druids and rangers will often find their techniques disruptive and unnatural. Gunslingers get along well with fighters, who often show them more respect then they show people using wooden weapons. In general, anyone who can mind a gunslingers company and doesn’t mind having their items tinkered with every so often is ok by them! As gunslingers are often curious and think outside the box, their best companions are usually rogues or others who have a knack for using, tampering with, and disassembling devices.

Role: Gunslingers find their best role as a secondary combatant, using their ranged combat abilities to get into a fight quickly and do lots of damage. Gunslingers also know their way around traps and locks. While not as proficient as a rogue, they often can use their abilities to “Aid Another” when dealing with locked doors and traps.

Game Rule Information
Gunslingers have the following game statistics.

Abilities: Dexterity is important for a gunslinger both because he tends to wear light armor and because of their ranged proficiency. Intelligence is also important for gunslingers as it gives them a high number of skill points and Intelligence is the key ability for a gunslingers spells. An Intelligence score of 14 or higher is required to get access to the most powerful gunslinger spells. Charisma is also helpful to a gunslinger as it fuels a lot of their skills.

Alignment: Any

Hit Die: d8

Class Skills: 6 + int modifier (x4 at 1st level)

Gunslinger Class Skills: Appraise (int), Bluff (cha), Concentration (con), Craft (int), Disable Device (int), Gather Information (cha), Hide (dex), Intimidate (cha), Knowledge: Architecture and Engineering (int), Knowledge: Local, Listen, Move Silently (dex), Open Lock (dex), Search (wis), Profession (wis), Search (int), Sense Motive (wis), Spot (wis)

Class Features
These are the class features of the gunslinger.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency (Ex): A gunslinger is proficient with all simple and martial weapons, as well as revolvers. A gunslinger may wear light armor, but not shields.

Urban Tracking (Ex): A gunslinger gains Urban Tracking as a bonus feat.

Gunsmith (Ex): A gunslinger gains a +2 insight bonus on all craft checks having to do with assembling a gun (blacksmithing to make bullets, alchemy to make gunpowder, gunsmithing to make the casing, etc.)

Improve Revolvers (Ex): At 2nd level and beyond, by tinkering with a revolver for 8 hours, a gunslinger can make the weapon function more efficiently. Every time a gunslinger earns this ability (at 2nd, 6th, 10th, 14th, and 18th level), his guns are somehow visually altered, allowing others to see that his weapon has been altered. For each such alteration, the wielder gains a +1 to their intimidate checks made to demoralize an opponent. This bonus does not stack for multiple tinkered weapons being visible. The alteration is the same for all weapons tinkered by a gunslinger, so should they duel wield revolvers, they will look identical. It is up to the player to determine what the alterations look like, though it should be creative and unique.

At 2nd level, a tinkered weapon counts as a masterwork weapon. As revolvers are complicated weapons, they are not normally sold as masterwork weapons, making this one of the only ways to gain such equipment. At 6th level, a tinkered revolver weighs half as much and is considered a light weapon. At 10th level, a tinkered revolver doubles it’s range increment from 30 ft. to 60 ft. At 14th level, a tinkered revolver gain a +1 to all damage rolls. This stacks with any other abilities which grant a +1 to damage, such as point blank shot. At 18th level, once per day a tinkered revolver can do a complete discharge, firing all bullets within the chamber. This is a full round action. Attack rolls for each bullet are rolled separately.

Practiced Hand (Ex): At 2nd level, a gunslinger gets Weapon Focus: Revolver as a bonus feat.

Draw! (Ex): At 3rd level, a gunslinger gets Quick Draw as a bonus feat, but only for drawing his revolvers, not other weapons.

Steady Eye (Ex): At 4th level, a gunslinger gets Precise Shot as a bonus feat, but only when using revolvers as his ranged weapon.

Trigger Happy (Ex): At 5th level, a gunslinger gains Improved Initiative as a bonus feat.

Expanded Chamber (Su): At 8th level when loading a revolver, a gunslinger can load “another bullet” effectively allowing him seven shots before he needs to reload.

Evasion (Ex): At 9th level, a gunslinger becomes much more aware of the combat around him, granting him the ability to dodge incoming fire much easier. He gains the Evasion ability.

Dive for Cover (Ex): At 12th level, a gunslinger furthers his ability to dodge incoming attacks. Once per day, if the gunslinger fails a reflex save to only be dealt half damage from an attack, he may try to make the save again. If he succeeds the second time, he only takes half damage from the attack, but he is considered prone.

Hide in Plain Sight (Ex): At 17th level a gunslinger may hide regardless of terrain or concealment.

New Items
A gunslinger has access to more advanced items.

Revolver (exotic one-handed)
Dmg: S = 2d4, M = 2d6
Critical: x2
Range Increment: 30 ft.
Weight: 3 lbs.
Damage Type: Piercing
Cost: 500 gp
Craft DC: 30

Bullets (10)
Weight: 1 lb.
Cost: 3 gp.
Craft DC: 10 (requires 1 oz. gunpowder)

Gunpowder (powder horn)
Weight: 2 lbs. (32 oz.)
Cost: 35 gp
Craft DC: 15

Different guns reload at different speeds.

1 revolver w/ free hand = standard
1 revolver w/ free hand + rapid reload = move
1 revolver w/ free hand + rapid reload + duel discharge = free
1 revolver w/o free hand = full round
1 revolver w/o free hand + rapid reload = standard
1 revolver w/o free hand + rapid reload + duel discharge = move

So, if Kain is duel-wielding revolvers with the Rapid Reload and Duel Discharge feats, he can empty both revolvers and then take a full round action to reload both of them.

New Feats
A gunslinger has access to different feats which may aid him.

Urban Tracking [general]
You can track down the location of persons within a community.

Duel Discharge [general]
When duel-wielding revolvers, you can reload them quicker.

Prerequisites: Proficiency with Revolvers, Rapid Reload, BAB +4

Benefit: With a flick of your thumb, you can open the cylinders of your revolvers, dropping out the blank shells with a flick of your wrists. This cuts your reload time when duel-wielding (see the above reloading chart).


Ishmayl said...

Very awesome - I've tried a few designs for a gunslinger class, but have never really been very successful. I may give yours a whirl if you don't mind!

Storyteller said...

ishmayl: Welcome to the blog! Glad you enjoyed the post. This was my first homebrew class creation so how well it will work I can't say for sure. It's certainly worth playtesting though. Let me know how it goes :)

B.G. said...

Nice, I think I am going to use this in my campaign as a villian. It will totally freak my players out:)

Storyteller said...

bg: It's definitely safer to play this class as a villain - at least at first. Then you don't have to worry as much as to whether or not it's a little broken. Let me know how your players respond if you do decide to do that! said...

As revolvers are complicated weapons, they are not normally sold as masterwork weapons, - I'd have to disagree with the logic here. If a weapon is rare, expensive, and complicated, then it follows that - just as occurred in the real world with early firearms - you'd want to make them for people who can afford them: the wealthy, adventurers included. And the wealthy are the sort to buy masterwork weapons, wouldn't you say?