Chaplain (3.5e Class)
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A chaplain is a warrior of his god, bringing forth the vindication of his deity to the battlefield; a conduit of raw divine power. Rather than being gifted with powerful spells and magicks, the chaplain is granted with the raw divine force of the deity they serve, manipulating their power much like a warlock manipulates unrefined arcane energy. The chaplain harnesses this power by performing invocations that rally his allies and demoralize his foes and by destroying his enemies with his lance of faith. His actions in combat bring forth a palpable aura of divine power as the chaplain becomes a scion of his deity.
Making a Chaplain
The chaplain is a divine class supplemented by an arsenal of spell-like abilities and bonuses generated entirely by his faith in a chosen deity.
Abilities: Charisma is important for a chaplain because the raw divine power his faith generates provides the force behind his blows in combat and Constitution is important for a chaplain to keep him alive in the front lines.
Alignment: The immensity of a chaplain's strength is in his unwavering dedication to his deity. As such, a chaplain's alignment must be identical to that of his deity's
Starting Gold: As Cleric.
|Saving Throws||Special||Invocations Known|
|1st||+0||+2||+0||+2||Shield of Faith, Divine Force, Aura, Invocation (least), Lance of Faith 1d6||1|
|2nd||+1||+3||+0||+3||Smite Opposition 1/day||2|
|3rd||+2||+3||+1||+3||Aura of Courage, Lance of Faith 2d6||2|
|5th||+3||+4||+1||+4||Divine Health, Lance of Faith 3d6||3|
|6th||+4||+5||+2||+5||Smite Opposition 2/day, New Invocation (least or lesser)||4|
|7th||+5||+5||+2||+5||Consecrate (against opposition), Lance of Faith 4d6||4|
|9th||+6/+1||+6||+3||+6||Lance of Faith 5d6||5|
|10th||+7/+2||+7||+3||+7||Smite Opposition 3/day||6|
|11th||+8/+3||+7||+3||+7||Lance of Faith 6d6||6|
|12th||+9/+4||+8||+4||+8||New Invocation (least, lesser, or greater)||7|
|14th||+10/+5||+9||+4||+9||Smite Opposition 4/day, Lance of Faith 7d6||8|
|16th||+12/+7/+2||+10||+5||+10||New Invocation (least, lesser, greater, or divine)||10|
|17th||+12/+7/+2||+10||+5||+10||Lance of Faith 8d6||10|
|18th||+13/+8/+3||+11||+6||+11||Smite Opposition 5/day||11|
|20th||+15/+10/+5||+12||+6||+12||Lance of Faith 9d6||12|
Class Skills ( 2 + Int modifier per level, ×4 at 1st level)
All of the following are class features of the chaplain.
Invocations: In combat, a chaplain harnesses the divine power of his faith in the form of invocations. The chaplain does not prepare or cast spells as other wielders of divine power do. Instead, he possesses a repertoire of attacks, defenses, and abilities known as invocations that require him to focus the raw energy generated by his faith. A chaplain can use any invocation he knows at will, with the following qualifications: A chaplain's invocations are spell-like abilities; using an invocation is therefore a standard action that provokes attacks of opportunity. An invocation can be disrupted, just as a spell can be ruined during casting. A chaplain is entitled to a Concentration check to successfully use an invocation if he is hit by an attack, just as a spellcaster would be. A chaplain can choose to use an invocation defensively, by making a successful Concentration check, to avoid provoking attacks of opportunity. A chaplain's invocations are subject to spell resistance unless an invocation's description specifically states otherwise. A chaplain's caster level with his invocations is equal to his chaplain level. The save DC for an invocation (if it allows a save) is 10 + equivalent spell level + the chaplain's Charisma modifier. Since spell-like abilities are not actually spells, a chaplain cannot benefit from the Spell Focus feat. He can, however benefit from the Ability Focus feat. as well as from feats that emulate metamagic effects for spell-like abilities, such as Quicken Spell-Like Ability and Empower Spell-Like Ability.
The four grades of chaplain invocations, in order of their relative power are least, lesser, greater, and divine. A chaplain begins with knowledge of one invocation, which must be of the lowest grade (least). As a chaplain gains levels, he learns new invocations, as summarized on the class progression table. A list of available invocations can be found following the class description.
At any level when a chaplain learns a new grade of invocation, he can also replace another invocation of the same or a lower grade. At 6th level, a chaplain can replace a least invocation he knows with a different least invocation (in addition to learning a new invocation, which could be either least or lesser). At 12th level, a chaplain can replace a least or lesser invocation he knows with another invocation of the same or lower grade (in addition to learning a new invocation, which could be least, lesser, or greater). At 16th level, a chaplain can replace a least, lesser, or greater invocation he knows with another invocation of the same or a lower grade (in addition to learning a new invocation, which could be least, lesser, greater, or divine).
Shield of Faith (Su): A chaplain is protected by the power of his faith, projecting a field of force around him. This field absorbs kinetic force and converts the energy into harmless light. This shield is identical to the Shield of Faith spell, but it is permanent. Shield of Faith can be suppressed by a Dispel Magic spell, but cannot be entirely removed unless willfully suppressed by the chaplain. The shield of faith provides a +2 deflection bonus to AC and improves by 1 for every six levels of chaplain your character has.
Lance of Faith (Sp): The first ability a chaplain learns is lance of faith. A chaplain attacks his foes with raw divine energy, using the unrefined power of his faith to deal damage and sometimes impart other effects. A lance of faith is a ray with a range of 60 feet. it is a ranged touch attack that affects a single target, allowing no saving throw. A lance of faith deals 1d6 points of damage at 1st level and increases in power as a chaplain rises in level. A lance of faith is the equivalent of a spell whose level is equal to one-half the chaplain's class level (rounded down), with a minimum spell level of 1st and a maximum of 9th when a chaplain reaches 18th level or higher. A lance of faith is subject to spell resistance, although the Spell Penetration feat and other effects that improve caster level checks to overcome spell resistance also apply to lance of faith. A lance of faith deals half damage to objects. Metamagic feats cannot improve a chaplain's lance of faith (because it is a spell-like ability, not a spell). however, the feat Ability Focus (lance of faith) increases the DC for all saving throws (if any) associated with a chaplain's lance of faith by 2.
Aura (Ex): A chaplain has a particularly powerful aura corresponding to his alignment (see detect evil spell). The power of your aura is equal to your chaplain level, just as the aura of a cleric or paladin.
Smite Opposition (Su): Once per day, a chaplain may attempt to smite an opponent whose alignment opposes his. He adds his Charisma bonus to his attack roll and deals 1 extra point of damage per chaplain level. At 6th level, and every four levels thereafter, a chaplain may smite one additional time per day (up to 5/day at 18th level).
Aura of Courage(Su): Beginning at 3rd level, a chaplain is immune to fear (magical or otherwise). Each ally within 10 feet of him gains a +4 morale bonus on saving throws against fear effects. This ability ceases to function when the chaplain is unconscious or dead.
Consecrate (Sp): At 7th level, a chaplain gains the ability to consecrate the ground around him. This ability's effect is similar to the spell consecrate, but rather than effecting undead, it effects creatures of the chaplain's opposed alignment. This ability can be used at will.
Zealous Surge (Ex): The chaplain's boundless energy and dedication to his deity allows him to throw off the effect of a special attack, spell, or other attack that would otherwise hinder or harm him. Once per day, from 8th level on, you can opt to reroll a single saving throw. You must abide by the result of the new, second saving throw, even if it's lower than the first. The decision to reroll must be made before it is revealed whether the first roll would pass. this ability does not require an action.
Incontestable Presence (Ex): At 15th level, the chaplain's presence in combat becomes a testament to his dedication. The chaplain becomes under the affects of Holy Aura, Unholy Aura, Shield of Law, or Cloak of Chaos, depending on his alignment. this effect cannot be suppressed at will, but dispel magic or a similar spell will suppress the effect.
Invocations of Faith
Some of a chaplain's invocations, such as staggering lance, modify the damage or other effects of the chaplain's lance of faith and shield of faith. These are called Invocations of Faith. Unless noted otherwise, lances of faith modified by invocations of faith deal damage normally in addition to imparting the effects described in the invocation description. A chaplain can apply only one invocation of faith to a single lance of faith and may only apply one invocation of faith to his shield of faith at a time unless otherwise noted, choosing from any of the invocations of faith that he knows. When a chaplain applies an invocation of faith to his lance of faith, the spell level equivalent of the modified lance is equal to the spell-level of the lance of faith or of the invocation of faith, whichever is higher. If a chaplain targets a creature with a lance of faith that has immunity to the applied invocation's effect, it still takes damage from the blast normally (provided it isn't immune to the lance of faith or any form of energy it's converted into).
A chaplain can apply an invocation of faith and an invocation of wrath (see below) to the same lance. When a chaplain uses both kinds of invocations to alter a lance of faith, the spell level equivalent is equal to the highest spell level between the lance of faith, invocation of faith, or invocation of wrath.
Example: Marnius, a 1st level chaplain of Kord, decides to make his lance of faith attack into a staggering lance. Marnius's lance of faith is the equivalent of a of a 1st-level spell, while his staggering lance is an effect equivalent to a 2nd-level spell. Therefore, the higher spell level equivalent is used.
Least Invocations of Faith
Daunting Lance: Target must make a Will save or become shaken for 1 minute. Staggering Lance: Target must make a Fortitude save or dazed for 1 round. Divine Accuracy: Converts Shield of Faith AC bonus to attack bonus for the round.
Lesser Invocations of Faith
Wounding Lance: Lance deals 1 extra point of damage for each d6 rolled. Branding Lance: Successful hit allows allies a +2 sacred bonus to attacks on target for 1 round. Affects only one target. Divine Power: Converts Shield of Faith AC bonus to damage bonus for the round. Divine Strength: Converts Shield of Faith AC bonus to bonus on either Will, Fortitude, or Reflex save for 1 round.
Greater Invocations of Faith
Penetrating Lance: Lance causes Wounding effect Forceful Lance: Lance bull rushes target. Use your CHA modifier for bull rush attempt Energized Lance: Lance is converted to the acid, cold electricity, fire, sonic, positive, or negative energy. Divine Determination: Converts Shield of Faith bonus to Charisma bonus. Divine Regeneration: Converts Shield of Faith bonus to fast healing.
Divine Invocations of Faith
Empowered Lance: Lance damage is maximized, but target is entitled a save (Reflex halves). Divine Empowerment: Doubles the effectiveness of Shield of Faith for 1 round/level per day.
Invoactions of Wrath
Some of a chaplain's invocations, such as spear of faith, modify the range, target(s), or area of a chaplain's lance of faith. these are called invocations of wrath. Unless noted otherwise, lances of faith subject to invocations of wrath deal damage normally in addition to imparting the effects described in the invocation description. A chaplain can apply only one invocation of wrath at a time to a lance of faith, and he can choose from any of the invocations of wrath that he knows. A chaplain need not apply invocations of wrath to his lance of faith, the spell-level equivalent is equal to the spell-level of the lance of faith or of the invocation of wrath, whichever is higher.
Least Invocations of Wrath
Spear of Faith: Lance range increased to 250 feet. Strike of Faith: Melee or ranged attack channels lance of faith.
Lesser Invocations of Wrath
Bolt of Faith: Lance pierces initial target, hitting enemies behind it for half damage.
Greater Invocations of Wrath
Blast of Faith: Lance takes the shape of a cone, reflex halves.
Divine Invocations of Wrath
Judgment: Lance affects all enemies within 20 feet.
In addition to the potent invocations of faith and wrath, chaplains learn a number of others than enable them to perform many tricks and attacks.
Invocation of Anger: Target of your level in HD or less must make a Will save or become frightened for 1d4 rounds Invocation of Vigilance: See normally in darkness and magical darkness. Lasts 24 hours. Invocation of Brotherhood: Extends Shield of Faith bonus to all allies within 30 feet. Lasts 1 round/level. Invocation of Favor: All allies gain a +1 bonus to attack, damage, and saves, enemies get -1. Lasts 1 round/level Invocation of Fervor: Aligns all allied weapons (depending on your alignment) within 30ft to overcome DR. Lasts until next attack Invocation of Solitude: Negates sound in a 15-ft radius. Lasts 1 min/level. Invocation of Resistance: Subject gains energy resistance 10 of a type of your choice for 1 min/level (One type).
Invocation of Despair: -6 to an ability score, -4 on attacks and saves, or 50% miss chance. Will negates. Invocation of Punishment: Makes subject blinded or deafened. Fortitude negates. Invocation of Cleansing: Frees object or person of your choice of one curse, one disease, blindness, or deafness Invocation of Alacrity: You and your allies act on the same initiative, whoever's is highest. Invocation of Vision: Dispels invisibility within 5ft./level.
Invocation of Truesight: Gain true seeing for 1min./level Invocation of Sending: As many as eight subjects travel to another plane. (See Plane Shift) Invocation of Freedom: Frees subjects from enchantments, alterations, curses, and petrification (See Break Enchantment).
Invocation of Rebirth: Fully restore dead subject (As per resurrection spell). Invocation of Glory: As Bull's Strength, but affects one subject/level.
A chaplain who ceases to be of the same alignment or who violates the laws of their deity loses all chaplain abilities and benefits. He may not progress any further in levels as chaplain. He regains his abilities and advancement potential if he atones for his violations. (This particular atonement procedure is left to the discretion of the DM). Like a member of any other class, a chaplain may be a multiclass character, but multiclass characters face a special restriction. A chaplain who gains a level in any class other than chaplain may never again raise his chaplain level, though he retains all of his chaplain abilities. The path of the chaplain requires unwavering discipline and dedication. If a character adopts this class, he must pursue it to the exclusion of all other careers. Once he has turned off the path, he may never return.
Bonus Feats: The epic chaplain gains a bonus feat (selected from the list of epic chaplain feats) every 3 levels after 20.
Epic Chaplain Bonus Feat List: Armor Skin, Damage Reduction, Devastating Critical, Epic Fortitude, Epic Prowess, Epic Toughness, Epic Weapon Focus, Epic Will, Great Charisma, Great Constitution, Great Intelligence, Great Strength, Overwhelming Critical, Superior Initiative, Combat Archery, Craft Epic Magic Arms and Armor, Dire Charge, Distant Shot.
Elf Chaplain of Ehlonna Starting Package
Skill Selection: Pick a number of skills equal to 4 + Int modifier.
Feat: Ability Focus (lance of faith).
Bonus Feats: Point Blank Shot.
Gear: Hide Armor, Backpack, Bedroll, Blanket (winter), Trail Rations (per day)x10, 150 arrows.
Gold: 1d4 gold.
Playing a Chaplain
Religion: While every reasonably well-known deity has clerics devoted to them, few worshipers have the unwavering faith and dedication to their deity to become chaplains. Chaplains are zealously dedicated to their deity and its precepts. A chaplain follows the teachings of their deity fervently with an almost blind faith that it will guide them and while there are many schisms in religion that separate denominations, most chaplains remain purists and embrace the oldest forms of their faith.
Other Classes: While chaplains embrace any and all adventurers that follow the same religion as brothers and will serve them as a comrade unhesitatingly, their feelings towards followers of other deities vary. Some chaplains find practitioners of other religions to be untrustworthy or even blasphemous, others often attempt to convert adventurers to the cause of their deity, and there are those (usually chaplains who follow a deity whose precepts are not focused on law) that are indifferent about other adventurer's religions. Chaplains find companionship in clerics who follow the same deity, and good chaplains often take on paladins while evil chaplains ally with blackguards. Their companionship is largely dependent of their faith. However, adventurers whose alignment openly opposes a chaplain's, or who worship a deity that opposes theirs are met with hostility and even violence.
Combat: Although the chaplain's primary role in combat is centered around offensive power, their arsenal of invocations allows them to be somewhat versatile. A chaplain could focus their training to invocations that support and benefit their allies, strengthen himself, or control his foes.
Advancement: While the path of a chaplain is one of dedication that few stray away from. Many paladins, clerics, and other divine classes take levels into chaplain, to acquire the raw divine power that it teases.
Chaplains in the World
Chaplains are ideal leaders. They are often found at the head of a nation's army leading warriors into battle. It is common for a chaplain to form small parties with clerics or paladins, purging areas of heretics (according to their religion). Rarely, a chaplain will find a stationary position at the head of a temple or church.
Daily Life: The life of a chaplain is often unpredictable, following the guidance of his deity no matter how strange or daunting the directions. A chaplain does not act on his own will, but on the will of his god. The unique and personal link that a chaplain share with his deity often brings him to places of solitude so that he may communicate with his god more easily.
Notables: Ostagar, the Hammer of Moradin was a dwarven chaplain of Moradin and a son of the Boulderdash Clan. His nation came under siege by Drow of the Underdark and after the Drow armies breached the city's inner walls and slew its defenders, it is said that Ostagar held off a thousand Drow before reinforcements came to push back the Drow legion. Ostagar died shortly after reinforcements arrived, vowing that he would return from death to defend his clan in times of war.
NPC Reactions: Members of the church revere chaplains for their close personal tie to their deity. They are often placed in high positions or hailed as prophets or oracles.
Characters with ranks in Knowledge (religion) can research Chaplains to learn more about them. When a character makes a skill check, read or paraphrase the following, including information from lower DCs.
Chaplains in the Game
Chaplains fit into a number of different campaign settings because their dependence on their deity's precepts cause them to be very versatile. The unique way they manipulate divine magic make them interesting characters to play, but many characters find this form of divine magic mysterious or unsettling.
Adaptation: A chaplain can fit the role of a melee or ranged combatant or even a heavy duty 'tanking' class. At higher levels, the chaplain can also fill the role of a contingency healer although the chaplain's invocations are more offensive than the abilities of his other divine counterparts. The adaptability of the chaplain's skills and his lance of faith allows him to fulfill many rolls. For example, a chaplain of Olidammara may give up heavy armor and medium armor to benefit his abilities to hide and sneak, using daggers to deliver strikes of faith in rapid succession.
Sample Encounter: Perhaps the PCs plan to lead an attack on Heimgarde, a barbarian stronghold to the north that has been causing problems for the local militia. As the PCs march to the stronghold gates, they are attacked by an organized war party. The party soon realizes that the small attacks on the local militia had been a rather successful attempt to goad them into beginning a war so that the barbarians of Heimgarde, led by Marnius the Axe, could exalt their god Kord in glorious combat. The PCs must then help the militia's soldiers fend off the barbarian war party as well as defeat Marnius the Axe, a chaplain revered for his skills in combat and the palpable divine power gifted to him by Kord.