Marshal, Variant (3.5e Class)

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With his standard flying high, he bellows a command and charges, leading his soldiers into the thick of battle. The Marshall's role in the party is a leader both on and off the battlefield. His abilities support those around him. The Marshall is not a spellcaster, but some of his abilities have extraordinary and supernatural properties. The Marshall is a leader, but he need not actually be of military rank. Rather, he must simply be a warrior with the ability and the experience to lead those around him.

Note: I created this as a alternative version to the Marshal class already created on the wiki. You will find that while some abilities are extremely similar, others are radically different. If the author (or anyone else for that matter) of the original Marshal wiki page does not like the fact that I borrowed heavily from that class, feel free to voice your opinions in the talk page and a favorable compromise can be reached.

Making a Marshall[edit]

The support that the Marshall can offer to his fellow party members in battle is unrivaled. His skill in controlling the battlefield is uncanny. He can hold his own in a fight well enough, but for many of his abilities to work, he must be hefting his battle standard. For the Marshall to be effective, he must have a party that listens to him and takes time out of their day to train in his Battlefield Maneuvers. If a party member and the Marshall cannot see eye to eye, the Marshall's support abilities could be thoroughly hindered.

Abilities: Charisma fuels the majority of the Marshall's abilities. Wisdom is also important if you want an experienced Marshall. Strength, Dexterity, and Constitution are important if he is a combat-focused build. Intelligence is important for his skills. His most important abilities are his Battlefield Maneuvers, his use of the Battle Standard, and his early Leadership Feats.

Races: Any race with a preference to organized warfare would have a Marshall.

Alignment: Any non-chaotic, unless back story gives acceptable reasons. Most Marshalls must have order in their army, so a chaotic Marshall is usually unfeasible.

Starting Gold: 3d10 X 10 (150gp)

Starting Age: As fighter

Table: The Marshall

Hit Die: d10

Level Base
Attack Bonus
Saving Throws Special
Fort Ref Will
1st +1 +2 +0 +2 Battlefield Maneuvers: Don't Die on me!, Battle Standard
2nd +2 +3 +0 +3 Wary
3rd +3 +3 +1 +3 Battlefield Maneuvers: Step as One!
4th +4 +4 +1 +4 Leadership
5th +5 +4 +1 +4 Battlefield Maneuvers: Look out!
6th +6/+1 +5 +2 +5 Lead by Example
7th +7/+2 +5 +2 +5 Battlefield Maneuvers: Double time!, Perceptive
8th +8/+3 +6 +2 +6 Leadership II
9th +9/+4 +6 +3 +6 Battlefield Maneuvers: No quarter!
10th +10/+5 +7 +3 +7 Company Standard
11th +11/+6/+1 +7 +3 +7 Battlefield Maneuvers: Stand your ground!
12th +12/+7/+2 +8 +4 +8 Watchful, Leadership III
13th +13/+8/+3 +8 +4 +8 Battlefield Maneuvers: Fire on my target!
14th +14/+9/+4 +9 +4 +9 Improved Training
15th +15/+10/+5 +9 +5 +9 Battlefield Maneuvers: Shake it off!
16th +16/+11/+6/+1 +10 +5 +10 Leadership IV
17th +17/+12/+7/+2 +10 +5 +10 Battlefield Maneuvers: Don't let them escape!, Vigilant
18th +18/+13/+8/+3 +11 +6 +11 Inspirational Speech
19th +19/+14/+9/+4 +11 +6 +11 Battlefield Maneuvers: Charge!
20th +20/+15/+10/+5 +12 +6 +12 Imperial Standard, Leadership V

Class Skills 4 + Int modifier per level, ×4 at 1st level)
Bluff (CHA), Climb (STR), Craft (INT), Diplomacy (CHA), Gather Information (CHA), Handle Animal (CHA), Intimidate (CHA), Jump (STR), Knowledge (History/Nobility/Local/Military) (INT), Listen (WIS), Perform (Oratory) (CHA), Profession (WIS), Ride (DEX), Sense Motive (WIS), Spot (WIS), Swim (STR)

Class Features[edit]

All of the following are class features of the Marshall.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency: The Marshall is proficient with all simple and martial weapons, the battle standard (a quarterstaff or spear with a flag on it), with all types of armor (light, medium, and heavy) and with shields (except Tower shields).

Battlefield Manuevers: The Marshall trains and drills his men diligently to the point that his troops would follow his commands in their sleep. When the Marshall trains the party, he may use the following 10 Battlefield Maneuvers (provided he is of sufficient level). The Marshall cannot train unless there are at least 2 others that are willing to train under him. For every 1 hour of training, the Marshall may use his Battlefield Maneuvers for the following 12 hours. So, 6 hours of training would allow the Marshall to use his Battlefield Maneuvers in the following 72 hours. The Marshall can not rack up any more than 5 days worth, or 120 hours, in this way. Any party members that do not train in this way do not receive the bonuses from Battlefield Maneuvers.

These maneuvers can be difficult to pull off. Therefore, the Marshall can only order one maneuver per round and only one maneuver may be active at any given time. Calling a Battlefield Maneuver counts as a standard action unless otherwise noted.

Lastly, these maneuvers are taxing on the Marshall and the party. From training, the Marshall gains a certain number of Battle Points. These points are then spent on the maneuvers and are regained when the party trains at 6pt per hour up to the maximum, which is the Marshall's Level + his Intelligence Modifier.

Level 1 Don't Die on me!: Any currently dying allies within 30ft can reroll their stabilize attempts once per round. 1pt per ally

Level 3 Step as one!: Marshall and allies within 30ft may immediately take an additional free 5ft-step. 1+1pt per ally (free action)

Level 5 Look out!: Allies within 30ft may reroll a reflex saving throw, this can affect multiple allies if they simultaneously get affected. 2pt +1pt per ally (free action)

Level 7 Double time!: Ally within 60ft immediately moves their speed. 2pt (free action)

Level 9 No quarter!: Enemies within 30ft are considered flat-footed and flanked. 1pt per enemy per round

Level 11 Stand your ground!: Allies within 30ft receives an AC bonus equal to Marshall's Charisma modifier. 1pt per ally per round

Level 13 Fire on my target!: Allies within 60ft may immediately attack once with a ranged weapon at their highest BAB at a single enemy the Marshall designates. 3pt per ally

Level 15 Shake it off!: Ally within 30ft immediately recovers from any mind-affecting spell or ailment. 2pt (free action)

Level 17 Don't let them escape!: Allies' weapons within 30ft have: daze on hit 1d4+1 rounds. 2pt per ally per round

Level 19 Charge!!! Marshall and allies within 60ft charge the enemy and get a bonus to their attack roll equal to the Marshall's Charisma modifier and deal damage as if critical hits were rolled. If more than one ally damages the same enemy, it is stunned for 1 round. The Marshall may only use this maneuver in the surprise round or first round if the party wasn't ambushed. 3+3pt per ally

Battle Standard: It is awe inspiring indeed to see one's commander wielding a flag above the melee. Starting at first level when the Marshall is wielding his Battle Standard, all allies within 30ft gain a morale bonus of +1 to attack and damage rolls, and Will and Fortitude saving throws. These bonuses increase by +1 at level 10 and an additional +2 at 20. If the Marshall is knocked down or if the Battle Standard is no longer visible (Marshall unequips, drops it, is disarmed, destroyed, etc.), then all party members lose all morale bonuses and must make a Will Save DC 10+ Marshall's level or become dazed for 1 round and receive -2 to all saving throws against mind-affecting spells. There is no penalty if the Marshall willfully puts the Battle Standard down.

A Cohort of the Marshall may carry the Battle Standard instead of the Marshall himself. If so, the bonuses and the range from the Battle Standard are halved. The Marshall does not gain bonuses from the Battle Standard if his Cohort is wielding it.

The Battle Standard counts as a martial weapon. The Marshall may take Weapon Focus and other weapon- specific feats for the Battle standard in the same way he could any other weapon. It deals 1d8 bludgeoning damage and a x2 critical damage. It can be wielded as a two-handed weapon and thus get a 1,5 the wielder's STR in damage and 19-20 in crit threat range.

Wary: At level 2, the Marshall begins to develop a sixth sense for approaching conflict. To illustrate this, the Marshall gains Improved Initiative as a bonus feat.

Leadership: The Marshall has an uncanny knack at attracting men to his cause. At level 4, the Marshall gains Leadership as a bonus feat. At levels 8, 12, 16, and 20, he may choose in any order from the following feats. He may take the same feat twice when applicable: Spiritual Leader, Diplomatic Leader, Ambitious Leader, Great Leader, Natural Leader, and Destined Leader.

Lead by Example: The Marshall enjoys the thrill of battle as much as the next man. Starting at level 6, if there is an ally within 30ft and the Marshall is in melee combat and using his Battle Standard as his weapon, he receives his own Battle Standard bonuses. In addition, he may his Charisma modifier to the total number of Battle Points.

Perceptive: At level 7, the Marshal continues to hone his remarkable ability to sense impending danger. He gains Alertness as a bonus feat.

Company Standard: The Marshall's ability to inspire greatness in his allies has increased. At level 10, the bonus from wielding the flag now becomes +2 to attack and damage rolls, and +2 to Will and Fortitude saving throws within 60ft.

Watchful:At level 12, the Marshall's ability to sense hostiles around him is well practiced. If the enemy is granted a surprise round, the Marshal may also act in this round, but he gains no bonuses to his Initiative modifier when determining combat order in the surprise round. He may not use Battlefield Maneuvers in a surprise round.

Improved Training: The Marshall's ability to keep men focused during training is impressive. At level 14, the Marshall can now rack up to 10 days, or 240 hours, of Battlefield Maneuvers and 1 hour of training now results in 24 hours of Battlefield Maneuver readiness. In addition, the Marshall can add his Wisdom Modifier to his total number of Battle Points.

Vigilant: At level 17, the Marshall can sense danger from a mile away (not literally). The Marshall will always acts first at the beginning of combat. If the enemy is granted a surprise round, he may roll his Initiative as normal. He may not use Battlefield Maneuvers during the surprise round or on this first turn unless he chooses to roll for Initiative like any normal sod.

Inspirational Speech: Once per week starting at level 18, the Marshall may give an inspirational speech to his men. The speech creates a Hero's Feast, makes all allies immune to fear affects, and grants them temporary hit points equal to his Perform (oratory) skill. The effects last for 2 hours.

Imperial Standard: The Marshall's ability to improve his men's fighting capability is unequaled. At level 20, the bonus from wielding his Battle Standard becomes +4 to attack and damage rolls, and +4 to Will and Fortitude within 120ft. There is no longer any penalty for being knocked down or having lost control of the Battle Standard.


A Marshall who becomes chaotic loses his Battlefield Maneuvers ability and cannot advance further in Marshall until he becomes non-chaotic again. The DM may of course alter this at his discretion.

Epic Marshall[edit]

Table: The Epic Marshall

Hit Die: d10

Level Special
21st Epic Battlefield Maneuvers: Incoming!
22nd Hyper-vigilant
23rd Epic Battlefield Maneuvers: Fall back!
24th Leadership VI
25th Epic Battlefield Maneuvers: Press the attack!
26th Masterful Training
27th Epic Battlefield Maneuvers: Take position!
28th Leadership VII
29th Epic Battlefield Maneuvers: Hold the line!
30th The One and Only Standard

4 + Int modifier skill points per level.

Epic Battlefield Maneuvers: The Marshall can now perform more difficult maneuvers with his men. In addition to new maneuvers, the Marshall can call out more than one maneuver per turn, provided the amount of orders he performs does not exceed one full-round action. Furthermore, all non-epic Battlefield Maneuvers' ranges are doubled.

Level 21 Incoming!: The Marshall and any allies within 60ft that are not engaged in melee may immediately move up to half their speed in search of cover and gain bonuses from cover as if they had the Improved Cover feat until they leave cover. The enemy gets no attacks of opportunity. 1+1pt per ally (move action)

Level 23 Fall back! Marshall and allies may move double their speed in a direction that generally points away from the enemy. The enemy gets no attacks of opportunity. 3+3pt per ally

Level 25 Press the attack!: Allies within 60ft may act as if they have Spring Attack, Whirlwind, Cleave, Ride-by-Attack, and Shot on the Run. 2pt per ally per round

Level 27 Take Positions!: Allies within 60ft may don armor hastily without any penalties (even Half-plate and Full plate) and enemy does not gain a surprise round. 5+1pt per ally

Level 29 Hold the Line!: Allies within 60ft deal double damage and any enemy that engages an ally in melee combat allows that ally an Attack of Opportunity. 5+5pt per ally per round

Hyper-vigilant: The Marshall can always smell when a battle is coming. Starting at level 22, the Marshall can no longer be caught flat- footed.

Leadership: At levels 24 and 28, the Marshall may choose again from his list of Leadership feats. The list now includes Legendary Commander and Epic Leadership.

Masterful Training: The Marshall has trained countless men and he continues to do so by pure muscle memory. At level 26, the Marshall need only train an ally for 10 hours and the ally will never forget the Marshall's Battlefield Maneuvers. He still has to train his men for the Marshall to regain lost Battle Points and he fully recovers all Battle Points after 2 hours of training.

The One and Only Standard: The Marshall hold his battle standard high for everyone to witness. At level 30, the bonus from wielding the battle standard increases to +8 to attack and damage rolls, and +8 to Will and Fortitude saving throws for all allies within 240ft. In addition, any enemies attempting to engage the Marshall in melee combat must make a Will Save DC 10+ Marshall's Charisma modifier or be stunned for 1d4 rounds.

Dwarven Marshall Starting Package[edit]

Weapons: Battleaxe and Battle Standard

Armor: Leather Armor

Ability Scores: Str 13 Dex 10 Con 13 Int 12 Wis 14 Cha 15

Skill Selection: Pick a number of skills equal to 4 + Int modifier.

Skill Ranks Ability Armor
Diplomancy 4 Cha
Gather Information 4 Cha
Listen 4 Wis
Spot 4 Wis
Sense Motive 4 Wis

Feat: Combat Expertise

Gear: Backpack, waterskin, trail rations, flint and tinder, bedroll, tools

Special: Battle Points = Level + Intelligence Modifier = 2

Gold: 10gp

Campaign Information[edit]

Playing a Marshall[edit]

Religion: Marshalls do not need to be religious. When they are, they tend to worship deities whose portfolios encompass war, strategy, strength, destruction, and courage. Kord, Pelor, Heironeous, Hextor, and Halmyr are all common gods that Marshalls would worship.

Other Classes: Marshalls must be in charge. They do not take kindly to party members that wish to usurp them as a party leader. Marshalls will get along with anyone that is willing to follow directions. Rogues, bards, rangers, druids, and barbarians can sometimes be a pain for the Marshall to control, though they are not without their uses. Paladins, Monks, and other classes that come from an extremely structured background are the Marshall's favorites.

Combat: The Marshall has two roles in combat. One is as a melee combatant, though not as skilled as a Fighter. The second role is more important and it is to buff the party and keep a tactical advantage over the enemy.

Advancement: A multi- classing Marshall would do well to stick with other support classes, like a Cleric or Bard. He could also take some levels in Fighter to boost his combat effectiveness.

Marshalls in the World[edit]

You will never know what is going on unless you can hear the whistle of the arrows.
—, Dios, Human, Marshall

Daily Life: The daily life of a Marshall should be well structured. The average Marshall will personally see to it that his men are well-trained. If he is of a military organization, he will always see to it that his duties are fulfilled.

Organizations: Marshalls congregate in any form of organized military force. They often lead companies, battalions, or whole armies of soldiers; however, it would not be uncommon to see a Marshall as the leader of a mercenary band or the Captain of the Guard.

NPC Reactions: A PC Marshall for good or ill carries great weight with him wherever he goes. If he is a successful leader, soldiers will revere him. If he has had less than his fair share of victories, many NPCs will find the Marshall loathsome. The general populace may either respect or fear the Marshall depending on the Marshall's views on war.

Marshall Lore[edit]

Characters with ranks in Knowledge (History, Nobility, Military, Local), Gather Information, or some other relevant skill can research Marshalls to learn more about them. When a character makes a skill check, read or paraphrase the following, including information from lower DCs.

DC Result
5 Marshalls lead on the front line, aiding their subordinates.
10 Without frequently training his men, a Marshall is less effective in battle.
15 The Marshall has a sixth sense for approaching battle.
20 Name, location, and general accomplishments of a specific Marshall.

Marshalls in the Game[edit]

For PCs and NPCs alike, the Marshall is a leader. A Marshall would make a strong protagonistic or antagonistic NPC. He would make for a good boss battle. PC Marshalls could seek out positions of power in the game world and NPC Marshalls probably already control some power. Good for warring nations like Neverwinter, Ruathym, and Luskan or Baldur's Gate and Amn. Some monster races could even have Marshalls, like an Undead Commander, Illithid, Orcs, etc.

Adaptation: The class was made with good-aligned players in mind. Battlefield Maneuvers could be changed to be more aggressive or passive. The Battle Standard could have a Weapon Focus feat. Could remove the Initiative feats for more rallying and bardic type abilities. Could use a bit more non-encounter abilities.

Sample Encounter: The party stumbles upon a pitched battle in which Heron of the Ford, a human Marshall and his battered company are slowly being beaten back by seemingly endless waves of enemies. The party helps beat back a few enemies and there is a short respite in which the Marshall rallies his troops together for a final stand, of which the party may attend.

Sample Encounter 2: A village was just ransacked by a band of marauders. Some survivors believe the wicked men are holed up in an abandoned fort not far away. The party must storm the fort and defeat the marauders led by a Marshall.

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