Easy Rider (3.5e Prestige Class)
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|“||Leave my Companion, NEVAR!||”|
All life has a purpose on both the outer, physical plane and the inner, spiritual one. When mankind created the companion animal, the inner self acknowledged the need for a deeper, more tangible relationship with the animal kingdom other than just as a source of food and clothing. On the surface, this relationship seemed to be one of convenience, with animals serving man as hunters, protection, transportation, etc.; but the true relationship between mankind and the companion animal is a much deeper one. It is a relationship based on our need for perfect love.
Becoming an Easy Rider
Easy Riders are in a bond with their companion. They believe that the world cannot exist without their companion. Their full training is achieved both when they are trained along with their companion.
|Skills:||Ride(8 ranks), Handle Animal(8 ranks).|
|Feats:||Mounted Combat and one of the following|
|Special:||Spellcaster, Animal Companion (Black Bear or Wolf or Light/Heavy Horse or Boar or Eagle) or Mount.|
|Animal Type||Basic Animal||1st Advancement||2nd Advancement|
|Bear||Black Bear (level -3)||Brown Bear (level -6)||OwlBear (level -6)|
|Canine||Wolf (level 0)||Dire Wolf (level -6)||Winter Wolf (level -6)|
|Flyers||Eagle (level 0)||Dire Eagle (level -6)||Giant Eagle (level -6)|
|Pachyderm||Boar (level -3)||Rhinoceros (level -6)||Elephant (level -12)|
|Mounts||Light/Heavy Horse (level 0)||Light/Heavy WarHorse (level -3)||Unicorn (level -6)|
Spells: Easy Rider can cast the Spells described once per day. He can cast those only on this animal companion and only while he is riding it. He also gain every even level a level of his spellcasting class (granding him extra spell slots and spell levels) but nothing else from the selected class.
Animal Companion (Ex): At 1st level, the Easy Rider's class levels also stack with the character's druid level or paladin’s level for determining the statistics and abilities of her animal companion. If the Easy Rider changes her animal companion to any animal other than the initial selected gains no benefit from the easy riders class levels, and the easy rider loses the ability to take levels in the easy rider prestige class.
Character Improvement based on Companion: All these bonuses occur while the easy rider has mounted its companion.
- Bear: Bear Power (Ex): At 1st level, easy rider that has chosen to have a bear companion, gains extra traits from the bonding with the bear. He gains +2 to strength based skills (since bears are excellent swimmers this goes to +4 for swimming) and +1 on attack rolls.
- Canine: Wolf Senses (Ex): At 1st level, Easy Rider that has chosen to have a canine companion,gains part of it's vision. He gains low-light vision, allowing her to see twice as far as a human in starlight, moonlight, torchlight, and similar conditions of shadowy illumination. If Easy Rider already has low-light vision from another source (such as her race), her low-light vision improves, allowing her to see three times as far as humans in conditions of shadowy illumination. Easy Rider also gain a +2 bonus to spot, search and listen checks.
- Flyer: Eagle’s Splendor (Ex): At 1st level, Easy Rider that has chosen to have a flyer companion, gains part of his imposing presence. He gains +2 on all charisma based skills.
- Pachyderm: Pachyderm’s Skin (Ex): At 1st level, Easy Rider that has chosen to have a Pachyderm companion gain part of his skin. He gains +1 DR/- (stacks with existing damage reduction), +2 on constitution based skill checks and +1HP/2 easy rider levels.
- Mount: Stallion's Nature (Ex): At 1st level, Easy Rider that has chosen to have a Mount companion receives +1 natural armor (stacking). If he has the dodge feat, he can assign a second opponent to receive the dodge bonus.
Improved Animal Companion (Ex): Add one more level when determining your Companion's level. It stacks with Animal Bond (feat).
Strike of loss: The bonding between the Easy Rider and the Animal Companion has grown beyond the mere coexistence. The Easy Rider shares a part of the Animal Companion’s life within. In the event of Companion’s death, Easy Rider takes 4 permanent constitution damage. This damage can only be removed if the Easy Rider manages to Raise her companion or she finds and trains a new one.
Sneak Strike / Sinister Strike / Augmented Combat Expertise (Ex): At 3rd level, Easy Rider chooses one of the following bonuses.
- Sneak Strike: Well hidden at the back of his companion, easy rider becomes more adept in locating the opponent’s vulnerabilities granting him +1d6 sneak attack (both melee and ranged).
- Sinister Strike: On successful hit add +1 bonus damage to your damage to the damage dealt by your weapon (after critical multipliers are applied).
- Augmented Combat Expertise: If the user has the combat expertise feat, the user may extend by +1 (up to -6 attack bonus +6 ac bonus)
Bonus Feat: Easy Rider gains Weapon Focus as bonus feat on the chosen weapon.
Advance Animal Companion (Ex): You can choose from the next advancement from Animal Companions based on the previous one owned (as shown on table)
Inspire Beast (Ex): As a Swift Action and once every minute (10 rounds), you may make a Handle Animal check vs. DC 20 to grant your Animal Companion a +3 Morale bonus on Attack and Damage for 1 round. Easy Rider must be riding his Animal Companion.
Mourning of Death: Along with the loss of Hit Points from Strike of loss, easy rider loses his next round to Mourn. He is considered flatfooted for that round.
Further Character Improvement based on Companion: All these bonuses occur while the easy rider has mounted its companion.
- Bear: Extra Bear Power(Ex): At 6th level, Easy Rider that has chosen to have a Bear Companion, gains extra even more traits from the bonding with the bear. gains +4 to strength based skills (+8 for swim checks) and +2 on attack rolls.
- Canine: Keen Wolf Senses (Ex): At 6th level easy rider that has chosen to have a Canine Companion, Easy Rider's sight becomes even sharper. The Easy Rider's ranged attacks have +50% range. The Easy Rider may make spot checks as a swift action. The Easy Rider's class bonus to spot,search and listen increase to +4 for each.
- Flyer: Magnificent Eagle’s Splendor (Ex): At 6th level, Easy Rider that has chosen to have a Flyer Companion, gains an improved part of his imposing presence. He gains +4 on charisma based skills.
- Pachyderm: Improved Pachyderm’s Skin (Ex): At 6th level, Easy Rider that has chosen to have a Pachyderm Companion gains more traits of his skin. Improves the granted damage reduction to +2 (stacks with existing damage reduction), +4 on constitution based skill checks and +1HP per easy rider level.
- Mount: Unbound Stallion's Nature (Ex): At 6th level, Easy Rider that has chosen to have a Mount Companion increases the received natural armor to +2 (stacking). If he has the dodge feat, he can assign a third opponent to receive the dodge bonus.
Improved Sneak Strike / Improved Sinister Strike / Improved Augmented Combat Expertise: Must be the same as the previously selected.
- Improved Sneak Strike: Add another sneak attack die (+2d6 in total) with ranged or melee weapon.
- Improved Sinister Strike: On successful hit add +2 bonus damage to your damage to the damage dealt by your weapon (after critical multipliers are applied).
- Improved Augmented Combat Expertise: If the user has the combat expertise feat, the user may extend by +2 (up to -7 attack bonus +7 ac bonus).
Bonus Feat: At level 7, Easy Rider can choose one of the following feats as a bonus. He must meet all the prerequisites to gain this feat. If he doesn't this feat is not activated but remains until the prerequisites are met.
- Improved Bull Rush
- Improved Overrun
- Improved Shield Bash
- Improved Two-Weapon Fighting / Improved Multiweapon Fighting
- Improved Precise Shot
- Combat Casting
Improved Inspire Beast: Inspire Beast lasts for 3 rounds and the DC increases to 25. Again Easy Rider can try to inspire his companion while riding it and every 1 minute (10 rounds)
Devastating Revenge: After the round of mourning, if the killer of the animal is still alive, Easy Rider is fill with hatred and makes the killer a favored enemy (only the given one not the whole race) granting him the favored enemy bonuses +2 on attack/ and +2d6 damage rolls and skill checks. He attacks only the given character until dead.
Exalted Companion: At level 9, Easy Rider gains the exalted companion feat and he is able to acquire the 2nd Advancement Animal Companion (magical beasts). He is not capable of having any other Magical Beast Animal Companion other than the ones shown on the table.
Raise Companion: At 10th level, easy rider gets the spell to raise his dead companion with no XP/HD penalty(raise companion spell). He can raise only his animal companion, not other and the spell takes a full day and the components costs 25,000 gp.
Stunning Arrow / Blow (Ex): At 10th level, whenever Easy Rider successfully confirms a critical, that creature is stunned for 1d3 round. Creatures immune to criticals are immune to this effect.
Ultimate Sneak Strike / Ultimate Sinister Strike / Ultimate Augmented Combat Expertise: Must be the previous selected.
- Ultimate Sneak Strike: Add another sneak attack die (+3d6 in total) with ranged or melee weapon.
- Ultimate Sinister Strike: On successful hit add +3 bonus damage to your damage to the damage dealt by your weapon (after critical multipliers are applied).
- Ultimate Augmented Combat Expertise: If the user has the combat expertise feat, the user may extend by +3 (up to -8 attack bonus +8 ac bonus)
The Easy Rider's Animal Companion
A easy rider's animal companion is different from a normal animal of its kind in many ways. A easy rider’s animal companion is superior to a normal animal of its kind and has special powers, as described below.
|1st||Companion Fleet Movement, Bare the Weight of the Rider|
|2nd||Strike of loss|
|3rd||Feat Based on Companion|
|5th||Attack Improvement, Mourning of Death|
|7th||Feat Based on Companion|
Companion Fleet Movement (Ex): The Animal Companion's movement speed when is carrying it's jockey is faster than the norm for her kind by +10 feet. This benefit applies only when not carrying a heavy load. Apply this bonus before modifying the animal companion's speed because of any load carried. This bonus applies all types of movement Animal Companion may possess.
Bare the Weight of the Rider (Ex): The Animal Companion grows size is the largest possible in it's size category. It is capable of holding the Easy Rider even if he is on the same size category. If the Easy Rider is of the same size category, the Animal Companion looses it's Companion Fleet Movement and one step of manoeuvrability if it's flying also.
Strike of loss / Mourning of Death / Devastating Revenge: Animal Companion shares the same empathies as the easy rider.
Feat Based on Companion: Your Companion gains the following feat based on its type (even if it does not fulfill all the requirements). Your Companion looses it's next feat selection.
- Bear: Animal Companion gains Improved Grapple feat. It does not provoke an attack of opportunity when you make a touch attack to start a grapple. It also gain a +4 bonus on all grapple checks, regardless of whether it started the grapple.
- Canine: Animal companion gains the Improved Trip feat. It does not provoke an attack of opportunity when you attempt to trip an opponent. It also gains a +4 bonus on your Strength check to trip the opponent. If it trips an opponent in melee combat, it immediately gets a melee attack against that opponent as if you hadn’t used its attack for the trip attempt.
- Flyer: Animal Companion gains Improved FlyBy Attack feat. If the standard action taken by a creature during a round in which it uses Flyby Attack is a melee attack, the creature provokes no attacks of opportunity from moving out of squares threatened by its target.
- Pachyderm: Animal Companion gains Improved Toughness feat. It gains a number of hit points equal to its current Hit Dice. Each time it gain a HD (such as by gaining a level), you gain 1 additional hit point. If it loses a HD (such as by losing a level), you lose 1 hit point permanently.
- Mount: Animal Companion gains Improved Bull Rush feat. When you perform a bull rush it does not provoke an attack of opportunity from the defender. You also gain a +4 bonus on the opposed Strength check you make to push back the defender.
- Bear: Frightful Presence (Ex): The Animal Companion can unsettle foes with her mere presence. The ability takes effect automatically whenever the animal companion attacks, charges. Creatures within a radius of 30 feet are subject to the effect if they have fewer HD than the animal companion. A potentially affected creature that succeeds on a Will save (DC 10 + ½ animal companion’s HD + animal companion’s Cha modifier) remains immune to that animal companion’s frightful presence for 24 hours. On a failure, creatures with 4 or less HD become panicked for 4d6 rounds and those with 5 or more HD become shaken for 4d6 rounds.
- Canine: Savage (Ex): The Animal Companion gains the savage ability. If the Animal Companion successfully trips an opponent, it latches onto the opponent’s body and tears the flesh. This attack automatically deals an additional 1d6 plus strength modifier points of damage. The damage increases as 2d6 at 7th and 3d6 at 9th easy rider level. If an opponent goes prone for any reason in an area the animal companion threatens, the Animal Companion can also savage the victim as a free action (treat as the animal companion’s attack of opportunity for the round), even though it had nothing to do with tripping the foe.
- Eagle: Deflect arrows(Ex): Once per round when the mount or the rider would normally be hit with a ranged weapon, it may deflect it so that you take no damage from it. The Companion must be aware of the attack and not flatfooted. Attempting to deflect a ranged weapon doesn’t count as an action.
- Pachyderm: Stampede (Ex): When charging, it literally runs over anything of one same size or smaller that gets in their way, and deals 1d12/4 (rounded) Easy Rider's level points of damage on successful charge.
- Mount: Awesome Blow (Ex): As a standard action, the creature may choose to subtract 4 from its melee attack roll and deliver an awesome blow. If the creature hits a corporeal opponent smaller than itself with an awesome blow, its opponent must succeed on a Reflex save (DC=damage dealt) or be knocked flying 10 feet in a direction of the attacking creature’s choice and fall prone. The attacking creature can only push the opponent in a straight line, and the opponent can’t move closer to the attacking creature than the square it started in. If an obstacle prevents the completion of the opponent’s move, the opponent and the obstacle each take 1d6 points of damage, and the opponent stops in the space adjacent to the obstacle.
Feat Based on Companion 2nd: Your Companion gains the following feat based on its type (even if it does not fulfill all the requirements). Your Companion looses it's next feat selection.
- Bear: Beast Strike feat. When making a Grapple check to deal damage, adds it's Claw damage
- Canine: Sweeping Trip feat. When it successfully Trip an opponent, Animal Companion may forgo the "follow-up" attack and instead make a Trip attack against a new opponent that is adjacent to both it and the tripped opponent (i.e., you are trying to knock the first opponent into the second). This action does not provoke an Attack of Opportunity, but if it fails, the second opponent may attempt to Trip your Animal Companion. It may only use this ability once per round.
- Flyer: Aerial Superiority feat. When flying, it gains a +1 Dodge bonus to AC against opponents who cannot fly or who have a worse Maneuverability rating than it.
- Pachyderm: Bladeproof Skin feat. Gains Damage Reduction 3 / -, but it's tougher skin now imposes an Armor Check penalty of –2, which stacks with all other Armor Check penalties. It stacks with dr from barding
- Mount: Stalwart feat. It receives a +4 bonus on opposed Strength checks made to resist Bull Rush, Overrun, and Trip attacks
Monstrous Growth (Ex): The animal companion grows bigger, increasing by one size category. This is exactly like a permanent Animal Growth, except that it is non-magical, so it will stack with other magical effects that increase size.
Playing an Easy Rider
Combat: The role of Easy Rider is heavily dependent on this Animal Companion/Mount. Archers tend to choose canine or flyer and attack from afar. While on close quarters canine will trip the opponents or flyer will use FlyBy attacks. Melees focus on AC will tend to acquire a mount or a pachyderm so as to withstand. DPS melee characters prefer more DPS oriented Animal Companion/Mounts such as canine or bear which with their special attacks can increase their total DPS contribution. Casters tend to use Flyers to be able to cast from afar. But any combination is viable and welcome to be explored.
Advancement: Usual advancement is taking the prerequisite levels of the main class(es), then switch to Easy Rider up to the mid levels where the main power of the class is (Easy Rider's main boost is the fifth level where their companion gains their main ability). Latter levels can be a choice of the user whether he chooses to continue the Easy Rider levels or his main class(es)
Resources: Since easy rider fill many roles in the party, they can easily adapt as soon as they choose their first Animal Companion/Mount to the missing party role.
Easy Riders in the World
|“||Finish him pal||”|
Easy Riders due to their bonding with their Companion tend to spend lot of their time outside of the city outskirts. Cities rarely allow Companions such as the Bear or the Pachyderm, but they are more reluctant with the mount or even the canine. The are also very keen at adventuring and participating in groups where they show their outstanding performance at eliminating the deadliest opponents.
Easy Rider Lore
Characters with ranks in Knowledge(local,nature) can research famous Easy Riders to learn more about them. If the PCs achieve the DCs below, given them the corresponding piece of information.
|16||Easy Riders are one with their Companion.|
|25||Their Bonding with their Companion is part of their blood.|
|31||The higher the Easy Rider is the more Deadly he becomes.|
|40||Kill their Companion and you become their sworn enemy.|