Drakeheart (3.5e Class)
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Dragons are power and fear incarnate. They inspire dread, devotion, awe and wonder. It's only natural that many would want these things for themselves, and these people are destined to become drakehearts. Drakehearts seek to emulate dragons and gain their strength. Their abilities are supernatural in origin and many believe themselves to be descended from dragons, as some sorcerers claim. Drakehearts hail from a variety of moral backgrounds, but the pursuit of power and self-improvement is one thing they all share.
A drakeheart is a versatile party member. His passive auras increase his and his allies' combat effectiveness, and can also hinder his enemies. His health pool allows him to take hits that other classes could not. His breath weapon has varied uses and can be a constant source of damage. A drakeheart is also skilled at manipulating others outside of combat, much like the dragons he admires. He lacks the melee prowess of a crusader or warblade, and does not have the energy damage potential of a sorcerer or wilder, but any party would desire the powerful group utility of a drakeheart.
Making a Drakeheart
Abilities: A high Dexterity will let a drakeheart make the most of his breath weapon, as most of its templates are ranged touch attacks. Constitution is as important for drakehearts as it would be for any class, and it also affects the save DC of his area-of-effect breath weapon templates. A high Intelligence score will improve his Draconic Knowledge checks. A high Charisma will serve a drakeheart well, as it affects the power of his Touch of Vitality ability, the save DC of his offensive aura options, and will allow him to better manipulate others in social situations.
Races: Drakehearts come from virtually every race imaginable. The allure of the power of dragons crosses cultural boundaries and it is the rare society indeed that does not respect their wrath. Many drakehearts come from wild societies far from city walls, but this is by no means a hard and fast rule. Even civilized beings crave the strength that dragons wield. Drakehearts typically choose a path of the dragonscale that reflects their cultural upbringing - an elf from a forest settlement might follow the path of the green dragonscale, whereas a human from a desert society might follow the path of the blue dragonscale.
Alignment: Drakehearts may be of any alignment. The powers wielded by the true dragons appeal to people from all moral backgrounds, and any dragonscale path may be followed by a character of any alignment.
Starting Gold: 4d4×10 gp (100 gp).
Starting Age: Moderate
|Saving Throws||Special||Aura Range||Breath Weapon Damage|
|1st||+0||+2||+0||+2||Draconic Aura, Single (Su), Dragonscale (Ex)||5 feet||—|
|2nd||+1||+3||+0||+3||Breath Weapon, Blast (Su)||5 feet||1d6|
|3rd||+2||+3||+1||+3||Draconic Aspect (Su)||10 feet||1d6|
|4th||+3||+4||+1||+4||Draconic Knowledge (Ex), Draconic Adaptation (Ex), Breath Weapon, Lance (Su)||10 feet||2d6|
|5th||+3||+4||+1||+4||Draconic Resolve (Ex)||15 feet||2d6|
|6th||+4||+5||+2||+5||Touch of Vitality (Su)||15 feet||3d6|
|8th||+6/+1||+6||+2||+6||Draconic Adaptation (Ex), Breath Weapon, Arc (Su)||20 feet||4d6|
|9th||+6/+1||+6||+3||+6||Energy Immunity (Ex)||25 feet||4d6|
|10th||+7/+2||+7||+3||+7||Draconic Aura, Double (Su)||25 feet||5d6|
|12th||+9/+4||+8||+4||+8||Draconic Adaptation (Ex), Breath Weapon, Cone (Su)||30 feet||6d6|
|16th||+12/+7/+2||+10||+5||+10||Draconic Adaptation (Ex), Breath Weapon, Nova (Su)||40 feet||8d6|
|20th||+15/+10/+5||+12||+6||+12||Draconic Adaptation (Ex), Draconic Aura, Triple (Su), Draconic Transcendance (Ex)||50 feet||10d6|
Class Skills (4 + Int modifier per level, × 4 at 1st level)
A drakeheart's abilities come from dragons. All of the following are class features of the drakeheart.
Weapon and Armor Proficiency: Drakehearts are proficient with all simple and martial weapons, with light armor, and with shields (except tower shields).
Bonus Languages: All drakehearts know Draconic.
Draconic Aura (Su): A dragon utterly dominates any space it occupies merely by being there. Their noble grandeur, regal bearing, and savage ferocity are plainly on display for all to see. Dragons cannot simply be ignored. So, too, are the drakehearts. They have learned to harness this quality of the dragon into an aura that can bolster or undermine.
You can channel the might of dragonkind to project an aura that grants you and nearby allies a special benefit. Projecting an aura is a swift action, and you can only project one draconic aura at a time. An aura remains in effect until you use a free action to dismiss it or you activate another aura in its place. You can have a draconic aura active continually; thus, an aura can be in effect at the start of an encounter even before you take your first turn.
All drakehearts know five basic auras: acumen, brilliance, majesty, presence, and veracity (see table below). In addition, your chosen dragonscale path adds an additional specialized aura to your options. You chose one aura to manifest, and its benefits take effect in a radius around you. Most auras affect either you and your allies or just your enemies. This radius is 5 feet at first level and increases by 5 feet every two levels after that (3rd level, 5th level, and so on).
At 10th level, you can have two auras active at the same time.
At 20th level, you can have three auras active at the same time.
|Acumen||You and all allies within your aura gain a +1 morale bonus on Listen, Search, and Spot checks. This bonus increases by 1 for every five class levels you have.|
|Brilliance||Your natural and wielded weapons and those wielded by allies within your aura deal 1 extra point of acid, cold, electricity, or fire energy damage plus 1 point for every five class levels you have. The energy type of this aura matches the energy type of your breath weapon.|
|Majesty||You and all allies within your aura gain a +1 morale bonus to all Bluff, Diplomacy, and Intimidate checks. This bonus increases by 1 for every five class levels you have.|
|Presence||You unsettle foes with your mere presence. Enemies within aura radius must make a Will save (DC 10 + ½ drakeheart’s class levels + drakeheart’s Cha modifier). On a failure, enemies become shaken for the remainder of the encounter. A success renders the enemy immune to the aura's effect for 24 hours.|
|Veracity||You and all allies within your aura gain a +1 morale bonus to all melee, ranged, and touch attack rolls. This bonus increases by 1 for every five class levels you have.|
Dragonscale (Ex): Just as there are many types of dragon, there are many types of drakeheart. Each and every one of them venerates dragonkind, but they must choose one of the many varieties of true dragon to take after, over all others. To many, this is a harsh choice and it is made with the knowledge that the decision can never be rescinded.
You must choose a dragonscale path from among the true dragons (black, blue, brass, bronze, copper, gold, green, red, silver, or white). You gain a breath weapon energy type, additional class skills, and an additional unique aura based on the dragonscale you select as your path.
|Black||acid||Hide (Dex), Intimidate (Cha), and Move Silently (Dex)||Entropy||All enemies within your aura take 1 point of damage per turn, but it only affects enemies at or above one-half their full normal hit points. This damage increases by 1 for every five class levels you have.|
|Blue||electricity||Bluff (Cha), Spellcraft (Int), and Use Magic Device (Cha)||Disruption||All enemies within your aura must make Concentration checks (DC 10 + ½ drakeheart's class levels + drakeheart's Cha modifier) to manifest powers, cast spells, or use psi-like or spell-like abilities.|
|Brass||fire||Bluff (Cha), Handle Animal (Cha), and Knowledge (nature) (Int)||Insight||You and your allies within your aura gain a +1 morale bonus to all Knowledge checks. This bonus increases by 1 for every 5 class levels you have.|
|Bronze||electricity||Decipher Script (Int), Diplomacy (Cha), and Forgery (Int)||Alacrity||You and allies within your aura gain a +1 morale bonus on initiative checks. This bonus increases by 1 for every 5 class levels you have.|
|Copper||acid||Bluff (Cha), Perform (Cha), and Sleight of Hand (Dex)||Serendipity||You and allies within your aura gain a +1 insight bonus on any one roll per day. Once a particular ally chooses to use her bonus, the aura ends for that ally, but not for any other ally who has not yet used the insight bonus. This bonus increases by 1 for every 5 class levels you have.|
|Gold||fire||Diplomacy (Cha), Gather Information (Cha), and Sense Motive (Cha)||Rejuvenation||You and allies within your aura gain a +1 fast healing bonus, but it only affects allies at or below one-half their full normal hit points. This bonus increases by 1 for every five class levels you have.|
|Green||acid||Climb (Str), Intimidate (Cha), and Knowledge (dungeoneering) (Int)||Aggression||You and your allies within your aura gain a +1 morale bonus to strength checks made during a Bull Rush and rolls to hit made during a Charge or while Flanking. This bonus increases by 1 for every 5 class levels you have.|
|Red||fire||Appraise (Int), Intimidate (Cha), and Knowledge (the planes) (Int)||Confidence||You and allies within your aura gain damage reduction 1/—. This damage reduction increases by 1 for every five class levels you have (DR 2/— at 5th level, 3/— at 10th level, and so on).|
|Silver||cold||Bluff (Cha), Escape Artist (Dex), and Tumble (Dex)||Liberty||You and allies within your aura gain a +1 morale bonus on Escape Artist checks and grapple checks made to resist or escape a grapple. This bonus increases by 1 for every five class levels you have.|
|White||cold||Balance (Dex), Intimidate (Cha), and Spot (Wis)||Ferocity||You and allies affected by your aura gain a +1 morale bonus on rolls to confirm critical hits. This bonus increases by 1 for every five class levels you have.|
Breath Weapon (Su): The breath of a dragon is one of its most fearsome weapons. Tongues of roiling fire, great bolts of lightning, frigid cascades of ice, the searing onslaught of acid - the mere sight of such power is enough to give the most seasoned adventurers pause. Drakehearts are able to channel this primal power.
At second level, you gain a breath weapon corresponding to your dragonscale path. Using a breath weapon is a standard action. Regardless of the breath weapon template used or the type of energy damage it deals, all breath weapons deal 1d6 points of damage, plus an extra 1d6 points of damage for every two additional class levels (3d6 at 6th level, 5d6 at 10th level, and so forth). A drakeheart's breath weapon may be used with the following templates:
|Blast||This usage of your breath weapon is obtained at second level. Your breath is channeled into a ray with a range of 60 feet with no range increment. It is a ranged touch attack that affects a single target and allows no saving throw. After using the blast breath template, there is no cooldown period. Your breath weapon may be used again the next round.|
|Lance||This usage of your breath weapon is obtained at fourth level. Your breath is channeled into a ray with a range of 250 feet with no range increment. It is a ranged touch attack that affects a single target and allows no saving throw. After using the lance breath template, your breath weapon may not be used again for 1d2 rounds.|
|Arc||This usage of your breath weapon is obtained at eighth level. Your breath is a ray of energy that leaps from its first target to the next. Your primary target may be no more than 60 feet away. Each target may be no more than 30 feet from the previous. Each target affected requires a separate ranged touch attack. You may strike one secondary target per five drakeheart class levels you have. You cannot strike the same target twice. If you miss any target in the arc, the arc ends there. Each target struck after the first takes half the damage dealt to the primary target. This attack allows no saving throw. After using the arc breath template, your breath weapon may not be used again for 1d3 rounds.|
|Cone||This usage of your breath weapon is obtained at twelfth level. Your breath is wielded as a 30-foot cone. All targets within the cone take full breath damage. This is not a targeted attack, so it requires no attack roll. Any creature in the area of the cone may take a Reflex save for half damage (Fortitude for cold breath weapons). The save DC against a cone template breath weapon is 10 + ½ drakeheart’s class levels + drakeheart’s Con modifier. After using the cone breath template, your breath weapon may not be used again for 1d4 rounds.|
|Nova||This usage of your breath weapon is obtained at sixteenth level. Your breath strikes everything within a 20-foot radius of your position. This is not a targeted attack, so it requires no attack roll. Any creature in the area of the nova may take a Reflex save for half damage (Fortitude for cold breath weapons). The save DC against a nova template breath weapon is 10 + ½ drakeheart’s class levels + drakeheart’s Con modifier. After using the nova breath template, your breath weapon may not be used again for 1d6 rounds.|
Draconic Aspect (Su): As they gain experience, the drakeheart changes and grows more and more draconic, leaving their former selves behind. Such a transformation is not for the faint of heart and can never be undone. There are no uncertain drakehearts. Each of them fully embraces their ever-changing self and strives to adapt anew to everything. At 3rd level, you take on another aspect of your dragonscale path.
|Black Dragonscale||You can comprehend and communicate with reptiles. You are able to ask questions of and receive answers from reptiles, although they aren't any more friendly or cooperative than normal. Furthermore, wary and cunning reptiles are likely to be terse and evasive, while the more stupid ones make inane comments. If a reptile is friendly toward you, it may do some favor or service for you.|
|Blue Dragonscale||You can mimic any voice or sound you have heard, anytime you like. Listeners must succeed on a Will save (DC 10 + ½ drakeheart’s class levels + drakeheart’s Cha modifier) to detect the ruse.|
|Brass Dragonscale||You suffer no harm from being in a hot or cold environment. You can exist comfortably in conditions between -50 and 140 degrees Fahrenheit without having to make Fortitude saves. Your equipment is likewise protected.|
|Bronze Dragonscale||You can move through any type of terrain and leave neither footprints nor scent. Tracking you is impossible by nonmagical means.|
|Copper Dragonscale||You can climb and travel on vertical surfaces or even traverse ceilings. You gain a climb speed of 20 feet; furthermore, you need not make Climb checks to traverse a vertical or horizontal surface (even upside down). You retain your Dexterity bonus to Armor Class (if any) while climbing, and opponents get no special bonus to their attacks against you. You cannot, however, use the run action while climbing.|
|Gold Dragonscale||You receive a +1 luck bonus on all saving throws and similar rolls.|
|Green Dragon||Your base land speed increases by 10 feet. This has no effect on other modes of movement, such as burrowing, climbing or flying, or swimming.|
|Red Dragonscale||You gain a +5 competence bonus on Appraise checks, and being within 5 feet of a secret door, concealed door, or other unusual dungeon or terrain feature entitles you to a Search check to notice it as if you were actively looking for it.|
|Silver Dragonscale||You always fall a mere 60 feet per round (equivalent to the end of a fall from a few feet), and take no damage upon landing.|
|White Dragonscale||You can walk across icy surfaces without reducing your speed or making Balance checks.|
Draconic Knowledge (Ex): As dragons love to interrogate and question adventurers and other mortals, so too do drakehearts. The draconic proclivity for curiosity is another aspect of the dragon's form they seek to emulate, and a drakeheart never settles for half-measures.
Starting at fourth level, a drakeheart may make a special draconic knowledge check with a bonus equal to his drakeheart level + his Intelligence modifier to see whether he knows some relevant information about local notable people, legendary items, noteworthy places, or great treasure.
A successful draconic knowledge check will not reveal the powers of a magic item but may give a hint as to its general function. A drakeheart may not take 10 or take 20 on this check; this sort of knowledge is essentially random.
|DC 10||Common, known by at least a substantial minority of the local population.|
|DC 20||Uncommon but available, legends known by only a few people.|
|DC 25||Obscure, known by few, hard to come by.|
|DC 30||Extremely obscure, known by very few, possibly forgotten by most who once knew it, possibly known only by those who don’t understand the significance of the knowledge.|
Draconic Adaptation (Ex): As they grow, drakehearts take on more and more of the mien and form of the dragon. Wings, claws, tails - a drakeheart will have all these things and more before they are done. And a drakeheart is never done.
At 4th level, 8th level, 12th level, 16th level, and 20th level, your body becomes more and more like the dragons you emulate and admire. At each of those levels, choose one of the following adaptations, until you have accumulated them all:
|Claws||Your fingers become draconic claws. You gain two claw attacks dealing 1d6 slashing damage each (at medium size). If you already had claws, they become draconic in appearance.|
|Scales||Your body becomes partially covered in draconic scales and you gain a +1 bonus to natural armor. This bonus improves to +2 at 8th level, +3 at 12th level, and +4 at 16th level.|
|Tail||You sprout a draconic tail. You gain a tail slam attack, dealing 1d8 bludgeoning damage. If you already have a tail, it becomes draconic in appearance.|
|Water Breathing||You gain the ability to breathe underwater indefinitely, as many dragons do. This does not make you unable to breathe air.|
|Wings||You grow draconic wings. They allow flight at a speed of 60 feet with good maneuverability. You can even fly while carrying a medium load, though your fly speed drops to 40 feet in this case. If you already have wings, they become draconic in appearance.|
Draconic Resolve (Ex): Dragons cannot be affected by paralysis or sleep effects. A drakeheart unlocks the ancient secret to even this arcane and strange facet of draconic being. At 5th level, you gain immunity to paralysis and sleep effects. You also become immune to the frightful presence of dragons.
Touch of Vitality (Su): As dragons do, drakehearts tend to accumulate travelling companions. A thoughtful dragon, and by extension, a thoughtful drakeheart, does not value the lives of those that accompany them lightly. It is in the best interests of any drakeheart to ensure the survival of the people they surround themselves with, be they willing allies or servants.
At 6th level, you can heal the wounds of living creatures (your own or those of others) by touch. Each day you can heal a number of points of damage equal to twice your class level × your Charisma bonus. For example, a 7th-level drakeheart with a Charisma score of 14 (+2 bonus) can heal 28 points of damage. You can choose to divide your healing among multiple recipients, and you don't have to use it all at once. Using your touch of vitality is a standard action. It has no effect on the undead.
Energy Immunity (Ex): It is a foolhardy and impertinent dragon who would be damaged by their own breath weapon, and the same goes for a drakeheart. At 9th level, you gain immunity to the type of energy dealt by your breath weapon.
Draconic Transcendance (Ex): Having reached the pinnacle of how his body can permanently adapt, the drakeheart is forever changed. At 20th level, the drakeheart's type forevermore becomes Dragon rather than what it was previously (such as Humanoid, Monstrous Humanoid, or Aberration) for purposes of spells and magical effects.
|Level||Special||Aura Range||Breath Weapon Damage|
|24th||Breath Weapon, Discharge (Su), Greater Draconic Adaptation (Ex)||60 feet||12d6|
|28th||Breath Weapon, Wall (Su), Greater Draconic Adaptation (Ex)||70 feet||14d6|
|30th||Draconic Aura, Quadruple (Su)||75 feet||15d6|
4 + Int modifier skill points per level.
Breath Weapon, Epic (Su): As he reaches epic levels, the drakeheart's control over his mighty breath weapon only becomes more refined, varied, and devastating. He learns new ways to apply the power of the dragon's breath to control the battlefield and harm his enemies.
Damage continues to improve with level as before, and the drakeheart unlocks the following new breath weapon templates for his use:
|Discharge||This usage of your breath weapon is obtained at twenty-fourth level. Your breath is shaped into a narrow beam of energy that strikes a point on a solid or liquid surface no more than 120 feet away. It causes a 40-foot radius explosion, applying your full breath weapon damage to all targets caught within. This is not a targeted attack, so it requires no attack roll. Any creature in the area of the discharge may take a Reflex save for half damage (Fortitude for cold breath weapons). The save DC against a discharge template breath weapon is 10 + ½ drakeheart’s class levels + drakeheart’s Con modifier. After using the discharge breath template, your breath weapon may not be used again for 1d8 rounds.|
|Barrier||This usage of your breath weapon is obtained at twenty-eighth level. Your breath produces a barrier of energy. The barrier is ten feet in length per drakeheart class level, twenty feet high, and five feet thick. This is not a targeted attack, so it requires no attack roll. Any creature or object passing through this wall or occupying the same space as this wall may take a Reflex save for half damage (Fortitude for cold breath weapons). The save DC against a barrier template breath weapon is 10 + ½ drakeheart’s class levels + drakeheart’s Con modifier. The barrier lasts for a number of rounds equal to the drakeheart's Charisma modifier. After using the barrier breath template, your breath weapon may not be used again for 1d10 rounds.|
Greater Draconic Adaptation, Epic (Ex): As the journey towards draconic perfection continues and the drakeheart obtains epic levels, his physical form is refined and many of his previous adaptations improve in strength and scope, pushing him further and further from the creature he once was, closer and closer to the dragon itself.
At twenty-fourth level and every four levels thereafter, a drakeheart may choose to further improve one of the many modifications the dragon inside him has made to his body, as shown on the following table:
|Claws, Epic||Your claws deal damage as if they were one size category larger, dealing 1d8 slashing damage each (for medium-sized creatures). Additionally, they are treated as adamantine weapons for the purpose of dealing damage to creatures with damage reduction and bypassing hardness.|
|Scales, Epic||Your scales thicken, harden, and cover more of your body. Your natural armor bonus increases to +6. This bonus improves to +8 at 28th level.|
|Tail, Epic||Your tail gains reach (10 feet for medium-sized creatures) and deals damage as if it were one size category larger, dealing 1d10 bludgeoning damage (for medium-sized creatures). Additionally, it is treated as an adamantine weapon for the purpose of dealing damage to creatures with damage reduction and bypassing hardness.|
|Water Breathing, Epic||Your aquatic adaptation improves your underwater maneuverability and speed. You gain a swim speed of 50 feet, and you may perform any action underwater without penalty.|
|Wings, Epic||Your wings increase in size, granting you greater speed. You may fly at a speed of 100 feet with good maneuverability. You can even fly while carrying a medium load, though your fly speed drops to 80 feet in this case. Your wings also become thicker, more resilient, and their reflexes improve, granting you a +2 draconic bonus to armor class. This bonus improves to +4 at 28th level.|
Draconic Aura, Epic (Su): At the highest levels of advancement, a drakeheart's mere presence approaches the mythic. When he enters a room, everyone's hair stands on end. Seers and fortune tellers may get nosebleeds at the sight of him. He commands the attention of everyone surrounding him and he revels in the glory of it all.
At 30th level, you can have four auras active at the same time.
Half-Elf Red Drakeheart Starting Package
Armor: Studded leather
Skill Selection: Pick a number of skills equal to 4 + Int modifier.
|Knowledge (the planes)||4||Int||—|
Feat: Improved Initiative
Gear: Backpack, common lamp, grappling hook, iron pot, oil (4 pints), silk rope (50 ft.), tent, 10 days trail rations, waterskin
Gold: 28 gp
Playing a Drakeheart
Religion: Drakehearts revere dragonkind, so many worship draconic deities such as Astilabor, Bahamut, Chronepsis, Garyx, or Tiamat. However, many drakehearts see the worship of a deity as a waste of time that could be spent improving upon their selves.
Other Classes: Drakehearts tend to be a savage lot, so they get on well with others of a similarly wild bent. Barbarians, druids, and rangers are frequent companions. The fiery faith of clerics, the urbane slickness of rogues, and the measured study of wizards do not mesh well with the attitude of most drakehearts. They tend to have a friendly rivalry with sorcerers, since many also believe they are descended from dragons.
Combat: A drakeheart has good health but wears light armor. This enables him to take hits that others cannot, but he is not a dedicated tank like a barbarian or a knight. The bonuses granted by their auras allow drakehearts to fill a crucial battlefield support role, shoring up the party's weaknesses or enhancing its strengths as needed. Finally, the drakeheart's breath weapon allows him to control the space of the battlefield, applying pressure where it is required most to destroy priority targets at range.
Advancement: Drakehearts tend to be singlemindedly devoted to their pursuit of draconic perfection, and the rare few who do seek the power of other classes tend to select ones with a similar draconic bent.
Drakehearts in the World
Drakehearts are often revered as holy due to their power. Many advise the savage tribes as medicine men or lead them to war. Others prefer a more solitary life of quiet self-improvement and introspection. Since they are so focused on self-improvement and striving for greater heights, a large portion of the drakeheart population go forth and seek adventure, riches, and glory.
Daily Life: A drakeheart can and will follow any path of his choosing, though a purely sedentary lifestyle is a rare choice. Most drakehearts live on the road, never staying in the same place twice, forever searching for challenges and opportunities to prove themselves and gain glory and fame (or infamy).
Bloody-Handed Ujetaka, female half orc black drakeheart: she has led a confederation of six orcish tribes on a warpath that has carved a swath of destruction through a different city each year for the past ten years.
Dinpal the Gold, male human gold drakeheart: a crusading champion of justice, he was pulled into the demiplane of Ravenloft and has since waged a ceaseless campaign against the vile forces that infest the realm.
Leokas Helyanwë, male elf silver drakeheart: he lives alone on a solitary mountaintop, and his wisdom and insight are respected and renowned over great distances. Many seek his counsel, but few meet his expectations.
Organizations: Drakehearts are solitary individuals and have no order as unified as a brotherhood of knights or a circle of druids, but they each carry a certain respect for others who follow the same path. They may join other groups that speak to their ambition, such as a political group attempting to overthrow the local rule, or an adventuring party preparing to ransack and loot a forgotten dungeon for its spoils.
NPC Reactions: Drakehearts, with their draconic features, tend to stand above and apart from any crowd they may find themselves in. This can sometimes result in persecution by superstitious townsfolk, though a quick tongue may be able to sooth their worries. The mere presence of a drakeheart is enough to unnerve even the strongest-willed individuals as they command the space they occupy with their iron-fisted personalities.
Characters with ranks in Knowledge (arcana) can research drakehearts to learn more about them. When a character makes a skill check, read or paraphrase the following, including information from lower DCs.
|5||Drakehearts are dedicated to all things draconic. Each pursues the path of a certain color of dragonscale.|
|10||Drakehearts are bent on personal improvement. Like dragons, they have a burning desire for power, wealth, and glory.|
|15||As a drakeheart gains power, he becomes more and more like the dragons he emulates, gaining claws, wings, and even the dragon's breath weapon.|
|20||A drakeheart projects a powerful supernatural aura that alters the space around him, aiding his allies and hindering his enemies. They utterly dominate the field of any battle they join, just as a true dragon does.|
Drakehearts in the Game
Dragons have huge influence in any setting the game could possibly be played in. Because of this, it's easy to imagine dragon-worshiping cults that occasionally produce a drakeheart, who then leaves his lesser brethren in search of glory. Or perhaps there is a powerful drakeheart devoted to Tiamat who stands opposed to the players' quest. There could even be a lone wise drakeheart who serves as a mentor or teacher to the player characters. The possibilities are as varied as the colors of the dragons' scales.
Sample Encounter: Yllalynn, called "All-but-Troll," was a gnomish bandit who preyed upon unsuspecting trade caravans that passed through a thick forest along a major trade route. After some time, she witnessed a dragon annihilate a city from a vantage point atop a wooded mountain. Yllalynn imagined the piles of wealth that would be hers if she had that power, and a drakeheart was born. She followed the path of the green dragonscale due to her woodland habitat and cleared a hidden deep cave of its previous inhabitants with her newly-mastered acid breath. Now she ambushes all who pass through her forest, taking all their valuables to add to her ever-growing underground hoard of all that glitters.
Yllalynn prefers ambush tactics and will attempt to flee and create an ambush if she is found. She revels in her breath weapon and uses it as often as possible, prioritizing obvious spellcasters first and heavily-armored warriors second. Her preferred aura is Presence, but she will use other auras as necessary. She loves to use her force of personality to turn the tide of a fight, and she'll often jibe, insult, and discourage her opponents. She makes heavy use of profanity in pursuit of this goal. Yllalynn is a violent bandit but she prefers incapacitating her foes and stealing anything of value from them. She is not adverse to killing if killing is necessary, but it is not a priority for her. If the fight isn't going her way, she'll try to turn tail and run away when she has fewer than 20 hit points, preferably into some deep and dank cave.
|Female Forest Gnome Drakeheart 8|
|Chaotic Neutral Small Humanoid|
|Init/Senses||+4/Listen +14, Spot +1|
|Languages||Common, Draconic, Elven, Gnome, Sylvan, and a simple language that enables her to communicate on a very basic level with forest animals|
|AC||23, touch 15, flat-footed 21|
(+6 armor, +4 Dex, +2 natural armor, +1 size)
|hp||62 (8 HD)|
|Melee||Guisarme +12/+7 (1d6+5) and tail +5 (1d6+3)|
|Atk Options||Breath Weapon (Blast, Lance, or Arc) (4d6 acid)|
|Special Actions||Draconic Auras (Acumen, Aggression, Brilliance, Majesty, Presence, Veracity), Touch of Vitality|
|Abilities||Str 14(16), Dex 18, Con 12, Int 14, Wis 8, Cha 16|
|SQ||Dragonscale (green), Draconic Aspect (green), Draconic Knowledge, Draconic Adaptation (scales, tail), Touch of Vitality, Pass without Trace, Low-Light Vision, 1/day—dancing lights, ghost sound, prestidigitation. Caster level 1st; save DC 10 + Cha modifier + spell level.|
|Feats||Improved Initiative, Combat Expertise, Improved Trip|
|Skills||Climb +13, Craft (alchemy) +2, Disguise +14, Hide +8 (+12 in wooded areas), Intimidate +14 Knowledge (dungeoneering) +13, Listen +14, Survival +10|
|Possessions||+1 mithral breastplate, +2 defending guisarme, gauntlets of ogre power, cloak of resistance +2, sunrod, 347 Platinum, 913 Gold, 442 Silver, and 53 Copper|
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