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Savant of the Dead (Dread Codex 2 Prestige Class)

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{{#set:Summary=A not-necessarily-evil scholar of the forces of undead and negative energy. |Length=10 |Minimum Level=7 |Base Attack Bonus Progression=Poor |Fortitude Save Progression=Poor |Reflex Save Progression=Poor |Will Save Progression=Good |Class Ability=Arcane Spellcasting |Class Ability=Divine Spellcasting |Class Ability Progression=Full }} {{#set:Allowed Alignments=Lawful Good}} {{#set:Allowed Alignments=Lawful Neutral}} {{#set:Allowed Alignments=Lawful Evil}} {{#set:Allowed Alignments=Neutral Good}} {{#set:Allowed Alignments=Neutral}} {{#set:Allowed Alignments=Neutral Evil}} {{#set:Allowed Alignments=Chaotic Good}} {{#set:Allowed Alignments=Chaotic Neutral}} {{#set:Allowed Alignments=Chaotic Evil}}

Savant of the Dead

Everybody knows where the Savants live in Tâl Vorgath, but not where they meet and hold their secret meetings. They rarely leave their homes, and my henchmen have not yet been able to follow them on the streets. These necromancers remain a mystery to me.
—Erion Nidaeon, master thief

There are those among the necromancers who believe that there is much to learn from the dead. They do not deny the power of the undead and the negative energy plane, but understand that this power should be used with great care and caution.

The savants are necromancers who treasure the lore of the dead, and the lore gained from the dead. While most necromancers live solitary lives away from civilization, these savants create orders and secret societies and are often found in the greater cities. They share knowledge among them and keep to a strong code which in turn makes them strong. It is well-known that these necromancers keep secrets — secrets they would never dream on telling anyone not of their order, even their most trusted servants.

NPC savants are scholars who spend most of their time within their homes, studying and doing research. They are most often neutral to the happenings of the world, yet the secrets they keep, protects it from the realm beyond which remains a threat. They are known to keep servants among the living as well as the dead and are often tied to the Bloodbound.

Becoming a Savant of the DeadEdit

Entry Requirements
Skills: Knowledge (Arcana) 10 ranks, Knowledge (Undead or Religion) 10 ranks
Feats: Iron Will and Spell Focus (Necromancy).
Spellcasting: Must be able to cast at least five necromancy spells, one of which must be at least level 4.

Table: The Savant of the Dead

Hit Die: d4

Level Base
Attack Bonus
Saving Throws Special Spellcasting
Fort Ref Will
1st +0 +0 +0 +2 Ghostsight +1 level of existing spellcasting class
2nd +1 +0 +0 +3 Summon the Dead 1/day +1 level of existing spellcasting class
3rd +1 +1 +1 +3 Darkvision 60 ft. +1 level of existing spellcasting class
4th +2 +1 +1 +4 Negative Energy Resistance +1 level of existing spellcasting class
5th +2 +1 +1 +4 Summon the Dead 2/day +1 level of existing spellcasting class
6th +3 +2 +2 +5 Spirit Possession +1 level of existing spellcasting class
7th +3 +2 +2 +5 Detect Undead +1 level of existing spellcasting class
8th +4 +2 +2 +6 Summon the Dead 3/day +1 level of existing spellcasting class
9th +4 +3 +3 +6 Greater Spirit Possession +1 level of existing spellcasting class
10th +5 +3 +3 +7 Negative Energy Immunity +1 level of existing spellcasting class

Class Skills (Skill Points::4 + Int modifier per level)
Bluff (Cha), Concentration (Con), Craft (Int), Decipher Script (Int), Gather Information (Cha), Intimidate (Cha), Knowledge (all skills, taken individually) (Int), Profession (Wis), Sense Motive (Wis), Speak Language (None), Spellcraft (Int).

Class FeaturesEdit

All of the following are class features of the Savant of the Dead.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency: The savant of the dead gains no new proficiencies with weapons, armor, and shields.

Spellcasting: At each level, you gain new spells per day and an increase in caster level (and spells known, if applicable) as if you had also gained a level in a spellcasting class to which you belonged before adding the prestige class level. You do not, however, gain any other benefit a character of that class would have gained. If you had more than one spellcasting class before becoming a Savant of the Dead, you must decide to which class to add each level for the purpose of determining spells per day, caster level, and spells known.

Ghostsight (Su): At 1st level, the savant of the dead gains the ghostsight power, and her eyes change color to a dull grey. This enables the savant of the dead to see ghosts and invisible creatures within 60 feet. This power is always active.

Summon the Dead (Sp): This is a ritual power, where the savant calls forth one of the dead who must answer his questions. The ritual takes half an hour to prepare, and the savant must know the name of the spirit he is summoning. At level 2, the savant can use this power once per day, twice per day at level 5, and thrice per day at level 8. Each time the savant asks the dead spirit a question, he must succeed at an Intimidate check (DC 10 + the original creature's challenge rating) as he commands the spirit to answer him. After an hour, the dead returns to wherever they came from. This power should not be compared to the cleric spell speak with dead as this is a spirit summoning from the realms beyond, and the spirit knows whatever the original creature knew. The savant does not need a corpse to use this power, only the name of a dead creature.

Darkvision (Su): The savant of the dead now has Darkvision out to 60 feet. If he already had Darkvision, then it increases to 120 feet.

Negative Energy Resistance (Su): At 4th level, the savant of the dead gains resistance to negative energy equal to 10 + his class level.

Spirit Possession (Su): At 6th level, the savant has the power to call upon a spirit from the realms beyond and let it take possession of his body. This possession is not a mental possession, but one of memories and powers. There is several uses of this power, and each time the savant uses this ability he must specify the use.

  • Ancestral Guidance: The savant calls forth one of his ancestors to aid him perform a task. He gains a +5 bonus to saves or skill checks.
  • Heroic Guidance: The savant calls upon a heroic spirit of the past to aid him in battle. He gain a +2 bonus to AC and attack rolls.
  • Master’s Guidance: The savant calls forth the spirit of one of the ancient necromancers to strengthen his ability to cast spells. Necromancy spells the savant casts are at +1 caster level and +2 to the save DC.

The savant is possessed by the spirit a number of rounds which equals his Intelligence or Wisdom modifier (whichever is higher), and can only be possessed by one spirit at a time. This power can be used a number of times per day equal to the caster’s Intelligence or Wisdom modifier (whichever is higher) + half his class level, rounded down.

Detect Undead (Sp): The savant of the dead can use detect undead as a spell-like ability at will (caster level equal to the savant's hit dice).

Greater Spirit Possession (Su): At level 9, the savant can summon a more powerful spirit, but only once per day.

  • Ancestral Guidance: The savant calls forth one of his ancestors to aid him perform a difficult task. He gains a +10 bonus to saves or skill checks.
  • Heroic Guidance: The savant calls upon a heroic spirit to aid him in battle. He gains a +4 bonus to AC and attack rolls.
  • Master’s Guidance: The savant calls forth the spirit of one of the ancient necromancers to strengthen his ability to cast spells. Necromancy spells the savant cast are at +1 caster level and +4 to the save DC.

The greater spirit can only be called upon once every day, and not while the savant is already possessed by another spirit. The savant is possessed by the greater spirit a number of rounds which equals his Intelligence modifier or Wisdom modifier, whichever is higher.

Negative Energy Immunity (Su): At 10th level, the savant of the dead is immune to negative energy.



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