Shadow Lord (D20 Modern Prestige Class)

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Shadow Lord[edit]

Becoming a Shadow Lord[edit]

Characters able to ascend to Shadow Lord are warriors who will have faced many conflicts relating to the world of shadow but face them with the interest of an occultist rather than staunch opposition of a shadow slayer. As a result, the Shadow Lord is less intrinsically antagonistic towards the forces of shadow and can serve as a champion to both them and the mundane world, relying on his personal beliefs to decide his enemy rather than the race or origin of foes. Nevertheless, the Shadow Lord is at heart a warrior and focuses on martial skills when combating the more antagonistic forces of shadow (as well as those who would exploit forces of shadow).


To qualify to become a Shadow Lord, a character must fulfill the following criteria.

Base Attack Bonus: +9.

Skills: Knowledge (arcane lore) 15 ranks.

Feats: Archaic Weapon Proficiency, Weapon Focus with an archaic weapon.

Special: The player must have displayed a great sense of fairness in dealing with conflicts between the mundane realm and the realm of shadow. To that end, they must have previously fought significant forces of shadow for the sake of humans as well as significant forces of humans for the sake of peaceful shadowkind characters. Examples include fighting an Archfiend who seeks to enslave humans or uprooting a corporation that experiments on kidnapped shadowkind. The power of the Shadow Lord is great and can not be triggered simply by saving someone from a goblin or preventing a thief from stealing a half-elf's purse.

Class Information[edit]

The following information pertains to the Shadow Lord prestige class.

Hit Die: The Shadow Lord gains 1d8 hit points per level. The character’s Constitution modifier applies.

Action Points: The Shadow Lord gains a number of action points equal to 6 + one-half his character level, rounded down, every time he attains a new level in this class.

Class Skills[edit]

The Shadow Lord’s class skills are as follows.

Balance (Dex), Climb (Str), Concentration (Con), Gather Information (Cha), Intimidate (Cha), Jump (Str), Knowledge (arcane lore, earth and life sciences, history, technology, theology and philosophy) (Int), Listen (Wis), Profession (Wis), Read/Write Language (none), Sense Motive (Wis), Speak Language (none), Spot (Wis), Tumble (Dex).

Skill Points at Each Level: 3 + Int modifier.

Table: The Shadow Lord
Class Level Base Attack Bonus Fort Save Ref Save Will Save Special Defense Bonus Reputation Bonus
1st +1 +1 +1 +1 Shadowkin, Shadow Enemy, Detect Shadow, Shadow Lore +1 +0
2nd +2 +2 +2 +2 Bind Shadow creature, Untouched by Shadow +1 +0
3rd +3 +3 +3 +3 Shadow Enemy, Trusted Ally +2 +1
4th +4 +3 +3 +3 Bind Shadow creature, Untouched by Shadow +2 +1
5th +5 +4 +4 +4 Greater Shadow Enemy, Shadowmeld +3 +2

Class Features[edit]


At first level, take on the Shadowkind Human template, so long as you do not already have a Shadowkind template. If your character is already a Shadowkind Human, you receive no benefits from this class feature. If your character has any Shadowkind template besides a human or halfling, gain a +1 species bonus on all saving throws.

Shadow Enemy[edit]

At 1st and 3rd level, a Shadow Lord selects a type of Shadow creature as a favored enemy. Due to his extensive study of these foes and training in the proper techniques for combating them, the Shadow Lord gains a +1 bonus on Bluff, Listen, Search, Sense Motive, and Spot checks when using these skills against creatures of this type. He also gets a +1 bonus on weapon damage rolls against creatures of this type.

At each level after 1st, the Shadow Lord may add +1 to the value of the bonus against each of his favored enemy types.

Shadow Enemy Type
Magical beast
Monstrous humanoid

Detect Shadow[edit]

A Shadow Lord is uncannily aware of the denizens of Shadow and the true nature of reality. Once per day per his level in this prestige class, the Shadow Lord can sense the presence of a denizen of Shadow. In most campaigns any creatures other than humans, animals, and vermin are considered denizens of Shadow. Using this talent is an attack action that requires concentration. It has a range of 30 feet and lasts as long as the Shadow Lord concentrates, up to a number of rounds equal to his level in this prestige class.

The amount of information gleaned by this uncanny awareness depends on how long the Shadow Lord focuses his attention.

1st Round: Presence or absence of Shadow creatures.

2nd Round: Number of Shadow auras (creatures or objects of Shadow) in the area and the power of the strongest Shadow aura present. If the power of the strongest Shadow aura is “overwhelming,” and has a rating of at least twice the Shadow Lord’s character level, the Shadow Lord is stunned for 1 round and the use of this ability ends. While stunned, the Shadow Lord can’t act, he loses any Dexterity bonus to Defense, and attackers gain a +2 bonus on attacks made against him.

3rd Round: The power of each Shadow aura in the area becomes clear. If an aura is outside the Shadow Lord's line of sight, then he discerns its direction but not its exact location.

Shadow Aura: A creature of Shadow emanates an aura that links it to the supernatural dimension. The power of a Shadow aura depends on the type of creature or object emitting the aura and its Hit Dice or caster level.

Creature/Object Rating
Outsider HD
Magic item or spell Caster level x 1/2
Aberration, construct, dragon, elemental, undead creature HD x 1/2
All other denizens of Shadow HD x 1/5
Rating Aura Power
1 or lower Faint
2–4 Moderate
5–10 Strong
11 or higher Overwhelming

If an aura falls into more than one strength category (for instance, if a creature and a magic item are in the same place and each emits an aura), the ability indicates the stronger of the two.

Length Aura Lingers: How long a Shadow aura lingers after the creature or object has vacated the location depends on the aura’s original strength.

Original Aura Power Duration
Faint 1d6 minutes
Moderate 1d6 x 10 minutes
Strong 1d6 hours
Overwhelming 1d6 days

Each round, a Shadow Lord can turn to detect the presence of Shadow in a new area. The ability can penetrate barriers, but 1 foot of stone, 1 inch of metal, or 3 feet of wood or dirt blocks it.

Shadow Lore[edit]

A Shadow Lord can make a Knowledge check to identify certain characteristics of a non-animal, non-vermin creature, including any special attacks, special qualities, or vulnerabilities. In general, the DC of the Knowledge check equals 10 + the Shadow Lord’s Hit Dice. A successful check allows the Shadow Lord to unlock a single fact about the creature. For every 5 points by which her check result exceeds the DC, the Shadow Lord learns another piece of useful information.

The type of Knowledge check depends on the targets’s creature type, as shown below:

Knowledge (arcane lore): Fey, magical beasts.

Knowledge (earth and life sciences): Aberrations, animals, dragons, elementals, giants, humanoids, monstrous humanoids, oozes, plants, vermin.

Knowledge (technology): Constructs.

Knowledge (theology and philosophy): Outsiders, undead.

Bind Shadow Creature[edit]

At 2nd level, a Shadow Lord can select a type of shadow creature (any creature type other than animal or vermin) and bind one such creature into service. A shadow creature of the appropriate type and Hit Dice (GM’s choice) appears at the Shadow Lord’s side in 1d6+1 days. Unlike shadow creatures bound to an Occultist, many clamor to fight at the side of the Shadow Lord and are loyal for as long as the binding lasts. However, no dragons of size "tiny" or larger will ever choose to be bound to a Shadow Lord and are thus unavailable to this class. The bound creature obeys the Shadow Lord, providing protection, fighting at their side, and performing other services.

At 2nd level, the Shadow Lord can bind a Shadow creature with 2 HD or less. At 4th level, the Shadow Lord can bind a Shadow creature with 4 HD or less.

This feat can not be used in conjunction with the Occultist feat of the same name, if a shadow creature was previously bound to a character as an Occultist, that creature must be released before this binding is attempted.

Untouched by Shadow[edit]

At 2nd level, a Shadow Lord gains damage reduction against the natural weapons of the denizens of Shadow (claws, bite, and so on) equal to his level in this prestige class. Untouched by Shadow doesn’t reduce the damage dealt by firearms, melee weapons, or hazardous effects. The Shadow Lord also gains a +1 bonus on saving throws to resist the extraordinary, spell-like, or supernatural attacks of denizens of the shadow, and, during her action, the Shadow Lord can designate an opponent and receive a +1 insight bonus to Defense against any subsequent attacks from that opponent. The opponent must belong to one of the Shadow Lord’s chosen Shadow Enemy types. The Shadow Lord can select a new opponent on any action.

At 4th level, the Shadow Lord can gain any immunities, resistances, or damage reductions possessed by his bound shadow creature while Trusted Allies is active. The insight bonus to Defense as well as the bonus on saving throws each increase to +2.

Trusted Allies[edit]

The Shadow Lord fuses the powers of his two closest allies, his favored weapon and his bound shadow creature. As a full round action, the bound shadow creature may channel his power into his master's weapon, empowering the chosen archaic weapon with the strength of the bound creature. An empowered weapon behaves like a magic weapon in the hands of the Shadow Lord, providing an enhancement bonus equal to the creature's HD+1. This effect lasts until released or one of the conditions below is no longer met.

This ability can only be active so long as the bound shadow creature remains within 100 ft of the Shadow Lord. While this ability is active, the shadow creature can not make any non-move actions. The Shadow Lord must have weapon focus in the targeted weapon in order to for this effect to activate.

Greater Shadow Enemy[edit]

At 5th level, a Shadow Lord either selects one type of Shadow creature as a favored enemy and gains a +3 bonus on Bluff, Listen, Search, Sense Motive, and Spot checks as well as a +3 bonus on weapon damage rolls against creatures of this type, or a +1 bonus on Bluff, Listen, Search, Sense Motive, and Spot checks and +1 bonus on weapon damage rolls against all non-animal, non-vermin creature types not previously selected with Shadow Enemy.


Beginning at 5th level, a Shadow Lord gains the ability to merge his body and spirit with those of a bound shadow creature of size "medium" or smaller, fusing the creature's form into his own to become a more powerful warrior. The shadowmeld form has a number of hit points equal to the Shadow Lord's hit points plus the shadow creature's hit points. It has Strength, Dexterity, and Constitution scores equal to the Shadow Lord's score plus the shadow creature's ability score modifier. It has Intelligence, Wisdom, and Charisma scores equal to the Shadow Lord's scores. The Shadow Lord gains a bonus to natural armor equal to the natural armor score of the bound creature. A Shadow Lord can speak and cast spells normally in shadowmeld form, and can communicate in any languages known to his bound shadow creature. He can use all special qualities possessed by himself or the bound shadow creature. A Shadow Lord can use this ability three times per day. It's use does not interrupt the effects of "Trusted Allies"

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