Scout (5e Class)
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Every military force, from the Romans to Redcoats, Athenians to Zulu, have known the importance of the scout. They range ahead, sweep the path behind, and serve as outriders as the larger force moves across the countryside. If logistics is king in wartime, information is queen, and scouts excel at making sure that their side has more of it than the other, either by feeling out the enemy lines in quick skirmishes, spying, or making sure that their side is the one to pick when the engagement starts. From civilian woodsman to armored men with unparalleled speed and endurance, the scout is an unsung hero.
The scout's role on the battlefield may be specialized, but their skills are anything but. They need to be capable of operating on their own, or in small groups, for extended periods of time without dedicated logistical support, and this level of independence and adaptability makes the scout an ideal adventurer.
Creating a Scout
As you create your scout, remember that your character need not have a strictly military background. Frontiersmen, explorers, and nomadic raiders are all prime recruits when an army needs to draft scouts because their skill-sets are already tailor fit to the role. If you do choose to have a military background, why did you leave and go adventuring? Whether your background is military or civilian, why did you choose the dangerous and unglamorous role of a scout in the first place?
- Quick Build
You can make a scout quickly by following these suggestions. First, Dexterity should be your highest ability score, followed by either Wisdom or Constitution. Second, choose the Soldier background. Third, choose the weapons that fit your intended Division.
As a scout you gain the following class features.
- Hit Points
Armor: Light armor, shields
Weapons: Simple weapons, martial ranged weapons, martial finesse weapons
Saving Throws: Dexterity, Intelligence
Skills: Choose four from Animal Handling, Acrobatics, Athletics, Insight, Intimidation, Investigation, Medicine, Nature, Perception, Stealth, and Survival
You start with the following equipment, in addition to the equipment granted by your background:
- (a) Leather armor or (b) a shield
- (a) a shortsword or (b) a shortbow and quiver of 20 arrows or (c) a light crossbow and 20 bolts
- (a) two daggers or (b) four javelins
- (a) a dungeoneer's pack or (b) an explorer's pack
|2nd||+2||1d6||—||Swift Action, Battle Fortitude|
|4th||+2||1d6||+5 ft.||Ability Score Improvement, Fast Movement|
|5th||+3||2d6||+5 ft.||Extra Attack, Sidestep|
|6th||+3||2d6||+5 ft.||Scouting Division feature|
|8th||+3||2d6||+10 ft.||Ability Score Improvement|
|9th||+4||3d6||+10 ft.||Improved Skirmish|
|10th||+4||3d6||+10 ft.||Honed Senses|
|11th||+4||3d6||+10 ft.||Scouting Division feature|
|12th||+4||3d6||+15 ft.||Ability Score Improvement|
|14th||+5||4d6||+15 ft.||Ability Score Improvement|
|15th||+5||4d6||+15 ft.||Scouting Division feature|
|16th||+5||4d6||+20 ft.||Ability Score Improvement|
|18th||+6||5d6||+20 ft.||Freedom of Movement,|
|19th||+6||5d6||+20 ft.||Ability Score Improvement|
|20th||+6||5d6||+20 ft.||Honed Senses, Always Moving|
Beginning at 1st level, you rely on your mobility to take advantage of gaps in an enemy's defenses while keeping them from responding in kind.
After having moved at least 15ft in one round, if you are wearing no armor, your AC becomes 10 + your Dexterity modifier + your Wisdom modifier until the start of your next turn. You can use a shield and still gain this benefit. If you are wearing light armor but are not wielding a shield, your AC instead becomes 11 + your Dexterity modifier + your Wisdom modifier.
Additionally, once per turn, you can deal an extra 1d6 damage to a creature you hit with an attack after having moved at least 15ft in one round. The attack must use a finesse or a ranged weapon, and the target must be within 30 feet of you. The amount of the extra damage increases as you gain levels in this class, as shown in the Skirmish column of the Scout table.
You may not Skirmish while wearing heavy or medium armor or when carrying a medium or heavy load.
At 9th level your Skirmishing improves, allowing you to apply it twice per turn on separate attacks. The amount of the extra damage on the second attack is 2d6 less than your normal Skirmish damage, and may only be applied after having moved at least 30ft in one round.
Starting at 2nd level, you can add half your proficiency bonus, rounded down, to initiative and to any Constitution saving throws that you make that doesn't already include your proficiency bonus.
Starting at 2nd level, your experience and agility allow you to move and act quickly. You can take a bonus action on each of your turns in combat. This action can be used only to take the Dash or Disengage actions, or to interact with an additional object.
At 3rd level, you choose a division of the scouting corps that your training originates from, such as Reconnaissance. Your division choice grants you features at 3rd level and then again at 7th, 11th, and 17th level.
Ability Score Improvement
When you reach 4th level, and again at 8th, 12th, 14th, 16th and 19th level, you can increase one ability score of your choice by 2, or you can increase two ability scores of your choice by 1. As normal, you can't increase an ability score above 20 using this feature.
Starting at 4th level, your speed increases by 5 feet while you aren't wearing medium or heavy armor or carrying a medium or heavy load. This bonus increases to 10 feet at 8th level, to 15 feet at 12th level, and to 20 feet at 16th.
Beginning at 5th level, you can attack twice, instead of once, whenever you take the Attack action on your turn.
Starting at 5th level, when an attacker that you can see hits you with an attack, you can use your reaction to immediately move 5 feet in any direction and reduce the attack's damage against you by your Wisdom modifier or half, whichever is higher. If you are unable to move 5 feet you cannot use this ability, and if you are prevented from moving you still take full damage. This movement doesn't provoke opportunity attacks from the enemy who hit you, but it does from any others.
Beginning at 7th level, you can nimbly dodge out of the way of certain area effects, such as a red dragon's fiery breath or an ice storm spell. When you are subjected to an effect that allows you to make a Dexterity saving throw to take only half damage, you instead take no damage if you succeed on the saving throw, and only half damage if you fail.
Starting at 10th level, as long as you are not deafened, you have blind sight with a range of 10 feet. Within that range, you can effectively see anything that isn't behind total cover, even if you're blinded or in darkness. Moreover, you can see an invisible creature within that range, unless the creature successfully hides from you.
At 20th level, the range of this ability increases to 30ft.
Freedom of Movement
At 18th level, you can slip out of bonds, grapples, and even the effects of confining spells easily. This ability duplicates the effect of a freedom of movement spell, except that it is always active. You lose this benefit when wearing medium or heavy armor or when carrying a medium or heavy load.
In combat, you get a special reaction that you can take once on any creature's turn, except your own, up to a number of times per round equal to your Wisdom modifier (minimum 1). You can use this special reaction only to Sidestep enemy attacks, and you can't use it on the same turn that you take your normal reaction .
The methods a scout uses depends on the needs of the organization they serve in, and these are represented by different scouting divisions.
You are, first and foremost, an information gatherer. You range ahead of a larger force or sweep the countryside around it, searching out threats and, most importantly, finding the enemy before they find you or your allies. You are an expert at moving unseen, and leaving enemies no evidence of your passing.
When you choose this division at 3rd level, you can no longer be tracked by nonmagical means, unless you choose to leave a trail.
In addition, choose one skill from Perception, Stealth, and Survival in which you are proficient. You gain expertise with that skill, which means your proficiency bonus is doubled for any ability check you make with it. The skill you choose must be one that isn't already benefiting from a feature, such as Expertise, that doubles your proficiency bonus.
In the beginning stages of a battle, forethought and decisive action are more important than consistent mobility. You have advantage on attack rolls against any creature that hasn't taken a turn in the combat yet.
In addition, on your first turn after rolling initiative you may ignore any requirements to move before benefiting from the AC and bonus damage granted by your Skirmish ability, as well as the requirement that the target must be within 30 feet of you.
- Seeking Strike
At 6th level, you learn to strike with cunning and leave your enemies open to attack. When you successfully deal damage to a creature using your Skirmish feature, you may choose an ally to aid in attacking that creature. If your ally attacks the target before your next turn, the first attack roll is made with advantage.
- Land's Stride
Starting at 11th level, moving through nonmagical difficult terrain costs you no extra movement. You can also pass through nonmagical plants without being slowed by them and without taking damage from them if they have thorns, spines, or a similar hazard.
- Battlefield Reflexes
At 15th level, as long as you are not surprised or incapacitated at the beginning of combat, you have advantage on initiative rolls. If you are surprised but not incapacitated, you can still act normally on your first turn.
The value of a dragoon's mobility and flexibility is as much strategic and as it is tactical. A specialist "mounted infantry" force, these half shock-infantry, half skirmishers go where they're needed when they're needed, and can turn an opportunistic scuffle between light skirmishers into a full route. They are adept on foot or on horseback, and with crossbow or sword.
- Mounted Infantry
Starting at 3rd level, mounting or dismounting a creature costs you only 5 feet of movement, rather than half your speed, and being carried by your mount counts as movement for the purposes of Skirmishing.
In addition, choose one skill from Animal Handling, Athletics, and Acrobatics in which you are proficient. You gain expertise with that skill, which means your proficiency bonus is doubled for any ability check you make with it. The skill you choose must be one that isn't already benefiting from a feature, such as Expertise, that doubles your proficiency bonus.
- The Dragon and the Saber
Starting at 3rd level, you become adept at blending the use of swords and crossbows together fluidly. You can draw a light melee weapon as part of the attack you make with the weapon, and you ignore the loading quality of crossbows with which you are proficient. Additionally, when you make a crossbow attack and deal bonus damage from Skirmish, you can roll the weapon’s damage dice in place of the normal d6s.
- Combat Veteran
At 6th level, you've spent enough time in the thick of the fighting that you've grown tough and resilient--as long as you're still on your feet and moving, your spirit is hard to break. Every time you successfully deal your Skirmish bonus damage to an enemy, you gain 3 temporary hit-points that last until the end of your next turn.
- Harrying Attack
At 11th level, you learn to use ranged attacks to soften up a target before closing in. During your turn, if you successfully hit a creature within 30ft of you with a ranged attack, that creature can't make opportunity attacks against you for the rest of your turn. You also have advantage on your next melee attack roll against that creature this turn.
If the creature is already under the effect of this feature, the effect's duration is extended until the end of your next turn.
- Dragon Rush
At 15th level, if you move at least 30 feet in a straight line toward a Large or smaller target right before making a melee weapon attack against it, you can you can make one additional melee attack as a bonus action. The full bonus damage from your Skirmish feature may be applied to both attacks.
These light infantrymen specialize in flanking, harassing, and disrupting bigger and tougher forces, trying not to stay in place long enough for a heavier enemy to pin them down and crush them. Their iconic pelte shield is all they need to protect them against what comes their way, and the flexibility of the thrown or thrusted javelin lets them control the range of the engagement to their advantage.
When you enter this division at 3rd level, you learn to use a light shield and spear expertly in concert, readying spears in your shield hand and passing them to your main hand as needed. You gain the following benefits while you are wielding a shield in one hand and a throwing spear (a javelin, spear, dagger, or any other piercing weapon with the thrown property) in the other:
- When making an attack with a throwing spear, you can use Dexterity instead of Strength for the attack and damage rolls, and may therefor treat it as an attack with a finesse weapon for the purpose of features such as Skirmish.
- You can draw throwing spears as part of the attack you make with the weapon.
- You gain a +2 bonus to attack rolls you make using throwing spears.
Starting at 6th level, if you move at least 45 feet in a straight line towards your target immediately before making a thrown weapon attack, that attack has advantage and can apply your Skirmish bonus damage, even if the target is further that 30ft from you.
- Needling Attack
Starting at 11th level, you can use a bonus action on your turn to make an attack with a throwing spear.
If you hit an enemy with a ranged weapon attack using this feature, you can reduce the speed of the target by 10 feet until the start of your next turn. If you hit an enemy with a melee weapon attack using this feature, you can move it 5 feet to an unoccupied space, provided the target is no more than one size larger than you.
- Parthian Throw
At 15th level, while you are wielding a throwing spear, other creatures provoke opportunity attacks from you when they enter the reach you have with that weapon. You may treat your reach as 5 feet greater than normal when creatures provoke opportunity attacks in this manner, but if you choose to do so you must make a thrown weapon attack against the provoking creature instead of a melee attack.
It's not always practical for a unit or adventuring party to have a dedicated priest or doctor when operating with self sufficiency and independence are paramount. This is the duty of a chaplain—a fully fledged soldier, explorer, or adventurer who has taken up the additional mantle of confidant, and tends to the spiritual and physical wounds of their fellows.
When you choose this division at 3rd level, you begin serving you companions as an ear to listen and a shoulder to lean on. You become proficient in the Religion skill, if you are not already. In addition, choose one skill from Medicine, Insight, and Religion in which you are proficient. You gain expertise with that skill, which means your proficiency bonus is doubled for any ability check you make with it. The skill you choose must be one that isn't already benefiting from a feature, such as Expertise, that doubles your proficiency bonus.
When an ally rolls a Hit Die to regain hit points at the end of a short rest, you may tend to them, restoring additional hit points to them equal to your Wisdom modifier (minimum 1). Only one ally may benefit from your efforts per short rest.
- Comforting Hands
At 3rd level, your devotion to your companions allows you to heal minor wounds even in the heat of combat. You have a pool of d6s that you spend to fuel this healing. The number of dice in the pool is equivalent to your skirmish bonus damage.
As a bonus action, you can touch a creature and spend a number of dice from the pool. Roll the dice you spend, add them together, and restore a number of hit points equal to the total. You may choose to spend an Action performing this healing instead of a bonus action. If you do, you restore 6 hit points per dice spent instead of rolling.
Your pool regains all expended dice when you finish a short or long rest.
- Last Rites
At 6th level, you learn a special ritual for companions who are dead, dying, or will soon enter mortal peril. The ritual takes 10 minutes to perform, and requires no material components. If the target is already dead, you cast the spell gentle repose on them. If the target is alive, they gain the following benefits until the end of your next long rest:
- At the end of a short rest, they can speak with you briefly to feel reassured. Doing so restores hit points to them equal to your Wisdom modifier (minimum 1).
- The first time the creature is stabilized while dying, that creature also regains 1 hit point.
- As long as that creature is within 1 mile of you, you are continuously aware of their vital status: above half health, below half health, dying, or dead.
- If that creature dies, the spell gentle repose immediately takes effect on their corpse and they may send you their last words. The creature must have spent 1 minute composing these words between the completion of the ritual and their death.
A number of creatures up to your Wisdom modifier (minimum 1) may benefit from your Last Rites at a time, and you may perform the ritual for multiple creatures simultaneously. If a creature dies while under the effects of this feature, you cannot administer Last Rites until the triggered gentle repose effect ends.
- Covering Fire
At 11th level you can draw the attention of enemies away from your allies with strategic attacks. When you successfully deal damage to a creature using your skirmish feature, the creature cannot take reactions until the end of your next turn, and you have disadvantage to any attacks you make—or ready—against them during that round.
- Steadying Presence
Starting at 15th level, a few words from you during combat can steady your flock's nerves. As an action you may spend one die from Comforting Hands and then touch any number of target creatures that are currently benefiting from your Last Rites feature, whispering words of encouragement to them as you do. If necessary, you can break up your movement during this action to move between target creatures. Each creature has 5 hit points restored to it, and gains a number of temporary hit points equal to your scout level + your Wisdom modifier that last for 1 minute.
You must complete a short or long rest before using this feature again.
Prerequisites. To qualify for multiclassing into the scout class, you must have a Dexterity score of 13 or higher.
Proficiencies. When you multiclass into the scout class, you gain the following proficiencies: light armor, shields, simple weapons, martial ranged weapons, one skill from the class’s skill list.