The Shaolin monks used to have a presence in both Vest and Den Gylne Keiser Rike, but all the monasteries in Vest were burned to the ground a few years ago. The monks had been a thorn in the side for the emperor for quite some time, but none of his attempts to link them to the rebels were fruitful. That is, until an upstart wizard became the leader of one of the magic schools in the empire in return for ratting out a Shaolin monastery for being traitors against the emperor. A military campaign was launched against the monks in the name of said wizard, and hundreds were killed. Today, that wizard is known as Mokferuso, the most powerful Dragon Mage in the history of time, and a supposed epitome of Goodness. If people only knew….

Priest Class

Requirements:
Any non-evil Neutral alignment
INT 13
WIS 13
CHA 16

Required NWPs and WPs:
Anatomy
Zen Ceremony
Zen
Jiu Jutsu II

Bonus NWPs and WPs:
Dim Mak I

Hindrances:
Cannot Turn Undead
Can only wear leather armor
Shaolin Monks live in secluded monasteries most of the time, unless they are on some kind of mission on behalf of their order. Adventuring for the sake of adventuring is frowned upon, and seldomly accepted.
If you ever want to leave your monastery to adventure on your own, you need to defeat your masters in the courtyard on your way to the gate – or die.
The only sphere Shaolin Monks originally have access to it Healing, but all those spells are maximized.

Benefits:
The Shaolin Monks are renown for their wisdom and people often seek them out for guidance. This results in a +5 bonus on all encounter checks with other people.
Due to their extensive combat training, Shaolin Monks can specialize in any exotic weapon, and have hit rating advancement as fighters.

Lvl    Abilities
1    Shaolin Meditation
2    Shaolin Skin
3    Shaolin Speed
4    Bonus WP
5    Shaolin Studies
6    Bonus major priest sphere of your choice
7    Shaolin Strikes
8    Bonus WP
9    +1 Movement Action
10    Enlightenment
11    Bonus minor priest sphere of your choice
12    Bonus WP
13    Freedom of Movement
14    WIS bonus to AC
15    INT bonus to AC
16    Bonus WP
17    CHA bonus to AC
18    Bonus major priest sphere of your choice
19    +1 standard Action
20    Greater Enlightenment

Shaolin Meditation (Ex): If a Shaolin Monk meditates for one full round and enters combat within the next turn, he only takes half damage from all physical attacks during the battle (but still take full damage from other physical damage, such as falling down, falling rocks, etc.)
Shaolin Skin (Ex): +1 natural armor pr. 2 lvls.
Shaolin Speed (Ex): +1 movement and +1 Initiative pr. 3 lvls.
Shaolin Studies: Bonus Feat every 5 lvls.
Shaolin Strikes: +1 attack every 7 lvls.
Enlightenment (Ex): Permanent Comprehend Languages and Read Magic, +1 CHA/INT/WIS
Greater Enlightenment (Ex): Permanent True Seeing and Tongues, +1 CHA/INT/WIS

The Martial Artists of Vest all belong to one of eight different styles, each paying tribute to the characteristics of an animal. Being a martial artist also means protecting your village against dangers and participating in tournaments which in turn might serve to raise your personal social standing in the Vest society.

Fighter Class

Requirements:
STR 18

Benefits:
Your first proficiency slot on your totem style is free.
You learn how to use the Iron Bar, a devastating weapon.

Hindrances:
You cannot advance beyond level 3 until you have learned the special attack of your style, something which requires you to solve a task given to you from your master. A lot of martial artist leave the class in pursuit of another fighter class after giving up their quest. A typical quest involves making your way to a temple in the jungle where a real live animal of your style will attack you, dealing only subdual damage. This animal can only be damaged by your style’s special attack and will only receive subdual damage from it. Every round the animal attacks you (using the special attack of your style, so add +1 hit/dmg pr HD of the animal), you get a DC 35 WIS check to discover the secret of the attack. Once you have discovered it, you must succeed at DC 35 INT check to be able to use it against the animal. You get one check every round you try. Usually, this leaves people beat up and hurt for days and weeks until they finally succeed. Which is why most people give up entirely. Every time you are knocked unconcious, the animal will disappear and not reappear until the next day.

Lvl    Abilities
1    Iron Bar Proficiency, Totem Style
3    Style Special Attack
5    Iron Bar Specialization
10    Iron Bar Expert
12    Improved Special Attack
15    Iron Bar Master
20    Iron Bar Artist

Iron Bar Proficiency: Able to wield and use the Iron Bar, a two-handed iron pole weighing 50 kg. Although anyone with at least 18 STR is able to pick it up and strike someone with it for 1d10 dmg, only martial artists learn the maneuvers which turns it into a deadly weapon on the battlefield. Your movement is reduced by 6 while carrying an Iron Bar. Attacking with it is a full-round action.
Totem Style: You start your journey as a martial artist and get your first proficiency slot in the style you are studying. There are 8 styles, and each is stronger than one while weaker than another. Tiger beats Mantis, which beats Snake, which beats Leopard, which beats Bear, which beats Monkey, which beats Eagle, which beats Crane, which beats Tiger. Your totem style is cumulative with Martial Arts WP, and grants either +3 hit, dmg or AC pr. slot you designate to it. Once you choose hit, dmg or AC, you must stick to that for all your new slots, too.
Style Special Attack: This is your style’s trademark, and you cannot learn it without completing a quest given from your master. This attack is a standard action and deals lethal damage instead of subdual. In addition, you get +1 hit/dmg pr. lvl performing this attack. If you strike the style you prey upon, your hit/dmg bonus is doubled. If you strike the style which preys on you, you get no bonus. Trying to counter such a strike is harder than countering other kinds of attacks, so the DC is increased by 1 pr. lvl. The style you prey upon has it’s DC increased by another +1 pr. lvl, and the style which preys on you parries it like normal attakcs (DC = your hit + 12).
Iron Bar Specialization: The Iron Bar now deals 2d10 dmg. Attacking with it is a Standard Action.
Iron Bar Expert: The Iron Bar deals 3d10 dmg, and the attack is a Whirwind attack. Movement penalty reduced to 3.
Improved Special Attack: You special attack now also get hit/dmg bonus from DEX.
Iron Bar Master: The Iron Bar deals 4d10 dmg and you get an AoO on everyone who enters a square you threaten.
Iron Bar Artist: The Iron Bar deals 5d10. No movement penalty. You can now also perform a movement action in addition to the standard action (but not perform 2 movement action). During the movement action, you will automatically attack everyone within reach (even friendlies).

To First Mate Corus

From Captain Zanzibar

 

Fifteen men on a dead man’s chest

Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum

Drink and the devil had done for the rest

Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum.

The mate was fixed by the bosun’s pike

The bosun brained with a marlinspike

And cookey’s throat was marked belike

It had been gripped by fingers ten;

And there they lay, all good dead men

Like break o’day in a boozing ken.

Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum.

 

Fifteen men of the whole ship’s list

Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum!

Dead and be damned and the rest gone whist!

Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum!

The skipper lay with his nob in gore

Where the scullion’s axe his cheek had shore

And the scullion he was stabbed times four

And there they lay, and the soggy skies

Dripped down in up-staring eyes

In murk sunset and foul sunrise

Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum.

 

Fifteen men of ’em stiff and stark

Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum!

Ten of the crew had the murder mark!

Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum!

Twas a cutlass swipe or an ounce of lead

Or a yawing hole in a battered head

And the scuppers’ glut with a rotting red

And there they lay, aye, damn my eyes

Looking up at paradise

All souls bound just contrariwise

Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum.

 

Fifteen men of ’em good and true

Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum!

Ev’ry man jack could ha’ sailed with Old Pew,

Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum!

There was chest on chest of Elvish gold

With a ton of plate in the middle hold

And the cabins riot of stuff untold,

And they lay there that took the plum

With sightless glare and their lips struck dumb

While we shared all by the rule of thumb,

Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum!

 

More was seen through a sternlight screen…

Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum

Chartings undoubt where a woman had been

Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum.

‘Twas a flimsy shift on a bunker cot

With a dirk slit sheer through the bosom spot

And the lace stiff dry in a purplish blot

Oh was she wench or some shudderin’ maid

That dared the knife and took the blade

By God! she had stuff for a plucky jade

Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum.

 

Fifteen men on a dead man’s chest

Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum

Drink and the devil had done for the rest

Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum.

We wrapped ’em all in a mains’l tight

With twice ten turns of a hawser’s bight

And we heaved ’em over and out of sight,

With a Yo-Heave-Ho! and a fare-you-well

And a sudden plunge in the sullen swell

Ten fathoms deep on the road to hell,

Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum!

 

Aikido Masters have taken a much deeper dive into the art of Aikido than those with but a few dedicated slots in the proficiency. This has allowed them to unlock its offensive and damaging capabilities. But luckily, they tend to keep to themselves to avoid drawing too much attention to themselves or their art. And when cornered, most prefer to simply avoid their opponent’s blows instead of turning him into mince meat.

Fighter Class

Requirements:
Any Neutral alignment
DEX 15

Bonus NWP:
Tumbling

Bonus WP:
First slot of Aikido

Hindrances:
No added hit or dmg from STR when using Aikido.
Cannot wear any armor.
Cannot use weapons, with a few exceptions.

Level    Abilities
1    Novice
2    Unarmed Strike (same as 3.5 Ed monks)
3    Ki Strike (same as 3.5 Ed monks)
4    Able to use Aikido offensively to push opponents 5 feet pr. 4 levels in any direction
5    Practitioner
6    +1 free Aikido slot
7    +1 free AoO against those who move into a square you threaten
8    INT bonus to hit when using Aikido
9    Able to use Aikido offensively to deal dmg with allowed weapons (no STR hit/dmg bonus) or hands (still no STR hit/dmg bonus)
10    Fighter
11    Evasion
12    +1 free Aikido slot
13    Able to use Aikido offensively to Trip opponents
14    +1 free AoO against those who move into a square you threaten
15    Master
16    WIS bonus to hit when using Aikido
17    Improved Evasion
18    +1 free Aikido slot
19    Able to use Aikido offensively to Throw opponents
20    Grand Master

Novice: +1 natural AC pr. lvl, 1 free counter against all melee attacks.
Practitioner: +1 initiative pr. 5 lvls, 1 free counter against all missiles, able to wield a Bokken sword (a wooden practice sword which deals 1d6 dmg when used normally) or a Cane (1d4 dmg).
Fighter: Able to fight normally when prone, can Trip opponents instead of pushing them (DEX check DC 20 to avoid being tripped, end up on the ground if save is unsuccessful), able to wield a Fan (1d2 dmg, adds +2 hit if used with Aikido).
Master: Abble to Throw opponents (DEX + 1d6 feet away) instead of pushing them – this deals 1d6 impact dmg pr. 10 feet. Also able to start teaching Aikido NWP to others.
Grand Master: Able to Hurl (DEX + 2d6 + lvl feet away) opponents for 1d6 impact dmg pr. 10 feet. Can now accept Aikido Novices.

Aikido originates from Den Gylne Keisers Rike, and is an unarmed combat style kept alive by secretive, closed family schools. The objective of Aikido is not to defeat your opponent, but rather to make sure everyone stays out of harm’s way. This is accomplished by turning your body movements fluid as water, thus making you a much more elusive target, while using the power and momentum of your opponent to your advantage.

Weapon Proficiency

Requirements:
You cannot dedicate any slots to Aikido until you have found an Aikido Master who is willing to teach you the most rudimentary techniques. Once you have been accepted as a student, you can continue your progression on your own. But in order to unlock the (much more effective and lethal) secrets of Aikido, you have to become an Aikido Fighter (fighter class).

Every proficiency slot in Aikido gives you +1 hit and +1 attack.
Aikido hit rating is not based upon STR, but DEX.
Aikido is a defensive art, and can only be used when you are attacked and unarmed. In addition, it requires that you do not wear any kind of armor.
If someone attacks you and scores a hit, you can use Aikido to try to counter the attack (DC = opponent’s thaco +12). If you succeed, you avoid the blow and can move either yourself or your opponent 5 feet in any direction. On a natural 20, you also end your opponent’s turn.
Aikido can be used against any opponent up to one size category larger than you.

The martial art of Jiu Jutsu was developed by the Shaolin Monk order, and quickly became known as the most effective defensive style when Shaolin monks started defeating all and any opposition in tournaments and contests (sumo wrestlers gave them a run for their money at first, but they soon adapted a more aggressive approach against the massive wrestlers). Another defensive art, Aikido, is practiced by some, but it has its shortcomings compared to Jiu Jutsu.

Weapon Proficiency

Requirements:
Anatomy Humanoids NWP

Using Jiu jutsu:
Whenever someone attacks you, regardless of whether they actually hit or not, you can chose to use an attack to try to counter their attack. normal parry rules apply (DC = opponent’s hit + 12). If your attack is successful, you negate their hit (with a few exceptions).

Hindrances:
Only characters who start out in Vest, Solriket or den Gylne Keisers rike can chose Jiu Jutsu at level 1. Other characters either have to travel to said countries to learn it or practice under someone who knows the art already.
Jiu Jutsu cannot be used aggressively, only to counter attacks. And since it is an unarmed combat style,  you cannot be armed when using it. In addition, it cannot be used against armed opponents until you have designated 3 slots to the art.
Also, you can only use Jiu Jutsu against humanoids up to one size category larger than yourself.

Benefits:
When using Jiu jutsu, you get as many counters as the art allows you, and they do not count towards your attacks/actions the next round.

Jiu Jutsu and Specialization:
The first slot gives you +1 attack, +1 hit/dmg and +1 modifier on the Jiu Jutsu table.
The second and subsequent slots give you +1 hit/dmg/table modifier.
The third slot allows you to use Jiu Jutsu against armed opponents.

Jiu Jutsu Table:

Roll Dmg KO%    Maneuver
20    2    15    *Throw
19    2    10    **Pressure Point Strike to the head
18    1    10    ***Choke Lock
17    0    0    Grab
16    2    7    **Pressure Point Strike to the neck
15    2    5    *Throw, and the opponent must save vs Paralyze on his attacking arm
14    0    0    Regular Parry
13    1    3    ***Wristlock
12    1    2    ****Body Punch
11    0    0    Sudden Sidestep (5 feet in any direction)
10    1    1    *Trip
9    1    2    ****Low kick
8    0    0    Disarm
7    1    3    ***Elbow Lock
6    1    5    **Pressure Point Strike to the chest
5    2    7    *Throw
4    2    8    **Pressure Point Strike to the stomach
3    0    0    Sudden Leap (10 feet in any direction)
2    1    15    ***Choke Lock
1    2    20    *Throw

*The opponent ends up on the ground and must use a move action to get up or continue fighting on the ground.
**You take damage if you were hit, but can be quite powerful if you also know Dim Mak.
***See wrestling rules on Locks. Choke Locks also makes opponents pass out if they are unable to free themselves when it’s their turn. They die after 1/3 CON rounds if the lock is maintained.
****You take damage if you were hit.

Sumo wrestlers originate from the empire of Vest, where they enjoy a life of fame and luxury. But their life is not just all show and games – they can also be deadly opponents if they want.

Regardless of how weak a sumo wrestler is before he begins his career, his strength will soon rise to astronomical heights as he levels up. But his dexterity will sadly suffer, as will his weight and movement rating.

Fighter class

Requirements:
CHA 15

Hindrances:
Can only learn bludgeoning melee weapons and bows (must be strength bows or they will break)
Cannot wear any armor unless it has been designed specifically for the sumo wrestler. Once he levels up, the armor must either be modified or it won’t fit anymore.

Benefits:
One of the highest ranking social classes of the Vest society.
Impervious to subdual damage.
Treated as a large creature with 4 legs during Overbearing.
A sumo wretler is considered to be armed at all times and all his attacks deal lethal damage (of course, they can choose to deal subdual damage during tournaments, shows and contests – unless they have a reason not to).

Lvl    Abilities
1    Sumo Wrestling, Sumo Lifestyle
2    +1 STR, -1 DEX
3    +1 DR/All
4    +1 STR, -1 DEX
5    +1 DR/All
6    +1 STR, -1 DEX
7    +1 DR/All
8    +1 STR, -1 DEX
9    +1 DR/All
10    Sumo Charge, +1 STR, -1 DEX
11    +1 DR/All
12    +1 STR, -1 DEX
13    +1 DR/All
14    +1 STR, -1 DEX
15    +1 DR/All
16    +1 STR, -1 DEX
17    +1 DR/All
18    +1 STR, -1 DEX
19    +1 DR/All
20    Sumo Slam, +1 STR, -1 DEX (this is the last level where STR and DEX is modified)

Sumo Wrestling: The only unarmed combat style a sumo wrestler can learn, is sumo wrestling. but what a great fighting style it is! Sumo wrestling deals 1d4 lethal bludgeoning damage, and every slot you gain gives you +1 attack/hit/dmg with your hands. Whether you push, punch, pound, swing or hammer away with those fists of yours, you do a truckload of damage! sumo wrestlers are the only ones who can learn this fighting style, and it is the only known fighting style which Jiu Jutsu cannot be used to counter.

Sumo Lifestyle: +10 kg bodyweight pr. lvl, -1 movement pr. 30 kg gained. +1 society point pr. lvl. If you ever leave the sumo wrestler class, your lifestlye sticks with you, causing you to gain more weight while losing more movement. And alas, your hard gained STR will recede by 1 point EVERY level until it is back at where it started before you became a sumo wrestler. Your DEX, however, will not increase.

Sumo Charge: If you charge someone during the first round of combat, you can take 2 movement actions, followed by a full round action of Sumo Wrestling attacks.

Sumo Slam: You can sacrifice all your attacks but 1 in order to make a single Sumo Slam attack as a standard action (if you are able to perform more than 1 standard action in a round, you can still only do one Slam every round). The Sumo Slam attack deals Crushing/Structural damage, and you gain +1 hit pr. attack you have sacrificed as well as all the damage the other attacks would have caused. This means that a sumo wrestler who has 10 attacks who all do 1d4+20 (just an example) dmg, can sacrifice 9 of his attacks to perform a single crushing slam which has a +9 bonus to hit and a 9d4+180 bonus to dmg.

Talona is the only known evil demi-god who follows the Eight Immortals. Therefore, even though his followers are often assumed to be demon worshippers, they are not. But they would probably be persecuted a lot more, was it not for the fact that The Black Fangs of Talona have specialized in giving advice to rulers and important persons, as well as keeping them alive by checking their food and drink for poison.

Requirements:
Any Evil
INT 15

Required NWPs:
Religion
Statecraft
Diplomacy

Bonus NWPs:
Poisons

Hindrances:
Cannot Turn Undead
If the priest has a CHA of 12 or greater, he must tattoo himself in the face with demonically hideous patterns and images to be treated as having no more than CHA 11.

Weapons allowed:
All swords, maces and hammers, and a ceremonial dagger especially prepared with poison chambers.

Armor allowed:
Any

Major Spheres:
Combat
Necromancy
War
Chaos
Guardian
Summoning

Minor Spheres:
All
Charm
Protection

Lvl    Abilities
1    Accustomed to Poison
3    Identify pure poisons by smell
5    Identify poisons in drinks by tasting
7    Identify poison in food by tasting
10    Disease Touch
12    Hold Touch

Accustomed to Poison (Ex): +4 bonus on saves vs poison. If save is successful, poison has no effect. If fail is saved, poison has same effect as it would if a normal person saved successfully. Able to save against poisons which offer no save.

Disease Touch (Su): As a free action, the priest can cause a horrible, flesh rotting disease in any living being by touching it. The skin decays and turns green before pieces of flesh start falling off until the victim dies. Save vs Death DC 20 or lose 1 CON daily until death. This ability has unlimited uses daily.

Hold Touch (Su): as a Free Action, the priest can paralyze a target by touch. Save vs Paralyze DC 24, or be paralyzed for 1 turn.

The Picts are originally from Avalon, a fabled kingdom where King Arthur and his knights reigned from Castle Camelot. When Arthur and his men were slain by the demon Daliah, the whole of Avalon was transformed into treacherous swampland. And it stayed that way for almost a millennium, until the day a direct descendant of the old king entered Camelot and claimed it as his own. Brent Campbell of Breadalbane was his name, and the picts swore allegiance to King Brent. After Brent was crowned king, the swamps reverted back to forests and farmland, but the picts stayed the same. After a thousand years of living in the most deadly swamps known to man, they had become master survivalists.

+1 STR
+1 DEX
+2 CON
-5 CHA

Picts ignore hp rolls of 1-3.
All HD categories are one die size larger – wizards roll d6, rogues d8, priests d10 and fighters d12.
Low light vision
Infravision 120 feet
Move without trace in swamps and marshes
95% undetectable in swamps and marshes if they stand still
50% MR
Con bonus to saves (same as dwarves)
Immune to Fear

Bonus NWP:
Survival (swamp)
Sign Language
Signaling
signaling (underground)

The trademark of the picts is their fondness of the dark and how they have adapted to it. In everything from the greyness of dusk to pitch black, they use their hearing and infravison in a form of blind-fighting which grants them +2 hit and AC.

The Black Sand Fighting Style is used by the Black Sand Assassins, and is unavailable for everyone else. The assassins can use all their WPs on this style if they want, and even though it is an unarmed combat style, its benefits work on exotic weapons as well.

When chosing the first slot on Black Sand Fighting, the Black Sand Assassin must choose between 3 different approaches. This choice cannot be changed later. The 3 variations of the style are:

Accurate: +1 hit/lvl
Damaging: +1 dmg/lvl
Defensive: +1 natural AC/lvl

The benefits from the first slot is either the bonus from Accurate, Damaging or Defensive, in addition to +1 attack/hit/dmg/AC and +1 range on the Martial arts table.

From the 2nd slot onwards, the Assassin gains +1 attack/hit/dmg/AC and one maneuver from Table 19 in The Complete Ninja’s Handbook. All Maneuvers in all Principal Merhods are available, but you still must have chosen all earlier Maneuvers in a Principal Method to chose one that comes later.

For every 5 slots taken, the Assassin also gets to choose between the following abilities:
Hide in Plain Sight
Freedom of Movement
Fast Healing 1/lvl
Vanish – once daily, disappear just before taking damage and reappear up to 5 feet/lvl with an automatic attempt to MS/HS
Improved Unarmed Strike
Stunning Fist
Ki Strike
Dimension Step – once daily at will, disappear and reappear nearby during your own turn, range is 10 feet/lvl
Ki Breath – hold breath for 1 turn/lvl daily
Ki Strength – increase STR by +5 one round/lvl daily
Ki Movement – able to walk on water 5 feet/lvl or through solid material 1 feet/lvl twice each daily
Ki Power – allowed a second save if the first fails, once daily
Greater Ki Power – requires Ki Power, allowed a save against effects which do not have saves once daily, save vs Death DC 20