Thrallian Cavalier (3.5e Prestige Class)

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A thrallian cavalier upon his mount

Thrallian Cavalier[edit]

The sands shift relentlessly against the land yet they ride the dunetide as if a part of the sand itself.
—Thrallian Calvary Charge witness, Abimbola

Along the dunes and in the sands of Valgora's desert regions live the civilized people who have made the shifting sand their home. These people have learned to revere and respect the waste creatures who they live alongside. Some of the desert-faring races even begin to empathize with the creatures, and it is possible for two to share a great bond.

This is were the members of the Thrallian Cavalry are born. The desert races of the wastes and their hardened companions form a sacred sand bond and assist each other in keeping the deserts safe from all types of waste hazards.

Becoming a Cavalier[edit]

Characters at home in the heat are the first choice to become Atlantean Cavaliers. Races capable of surviving the harsh conditions, such as bhukas, baddlands dwarves, and sand humans are the most viable for the class. A character ready to join the ranks of the cavalry should be able to handle the wild elements and animals of the desert. A character may seek to become a cavalier to become a master of mounted combat.

Entry Requirements
Alignment: Any chaotic. The character's alignment must be within one degree of his mount. A Thrallian Cavalier is at home in the shifting sands and dunes of Valgora: lands of constant change and turmoil. This constant chaos affects the character's outlook, and thus he must be chaotic.
Base Attack Bonus: +6.
Base Saves: Fortitude +5.
Skills: Handle Animal 4 ranks, Knowledge (nature or religion) 4 ranks, Ride 5 ranks.
Feats: Mounted Combat
Race: Any race, though desert and waste races are more prone to join the ranks.
Special: The character must be granted admittance into the Talaran Army and go through basic training before becoming a cavalier. (DM Note:This is for Valgora-specific campaigns only.)
Table: The Thrallian Cavalier

Hit Die: d8

Level Base
Attack Bonus
Mount Speed (Charge) Special
1st +1 +2 +0 +0 Sand Mount, Sand Empathy, Sand Endurance 4/day
2nd +2 +3 +0 +0 10 ft. (10 ft.) Choking Sands 3/day, Frost Protection
3rd +3 +3 +1 +1 10 ft. (20 ft.) Rebuke Sandkin
4th +4 +4 +1 +1 20 ft. (40 ft.) Perfect Rider +2
5th +5 +4 +1 +1 20 ft. (60 ft.) Summon Sandkin IV 1/day
6th +6 +5 +2 +2 40 ft. (100 ft.) Perfect Rider +4, Master Rider
7th +7 +5 +2 +2 40 ft. (140 ft.) Summon Sandkin V 1/day
8th +8 +6 +2 +2 80 ft. (220 ft.) Sand Knight
9th +9 +6 +3 +3 80 ft. (300 ft.) Summon Sandkin VI 1/day
10th +10 +7 +3 +3 120 ft. (500 ft.) Sandkin Calling 2/day
Class Skills (4 + Int modifier per level)
Climb (Str), Craft (Int), Handle Animal (Cha), Intimidate (Cha), Jump (Str), Ride (Dex), Use Rope (Dex), Balance (Dex), Tumble (Dex), and Knowledge (nature and religion) (Int), and Swim.
Table: The Epic Thrallian Cavalier
Level Mount Speed (Charge) Special
11th 120 ft. (500 ft) Bonus Feat
12th 120 ft. (560 ft)
13th 120 ft. (560 ft.)
14th 120 ft. (620 ft.) Bonus Feat
15th 120 ft. (620 ft.)
16th 120 ft. (680 ft.)
17th 120 ft. (680 ft.) Bonus Feat
18th 120 ft. (740 ft.)
19th 120 ft. (740 ft.)
20th 120 ft. (800 ft.) Bonus Feat

Class Features[edit]

All the following are class features of the thrallian cavalier.

Sand Mount (Su): When the cavalier gains his first level in the thrallian cavalier prestige class, he tames and trains a animal at home in the sands and dunes of Valgora. The mount is immune to light effects and can speak, understand, and read any languages that the cavalier can. The mount is no longer mindless, but is ridden as a creature of Intelligence 1 (see below). The available mounts for a cavalier may vary depending on the specific campaign or dungeon master's digression, but generally can be chosen from the following: at first level: camel, horse, medium scorpion, or a jackal. At third, sixth, and ninth levels, the cavalier may choose to change animals, and at each specific level the chose of arctic creatures grows. At third level: war camel, warhorse. At sixth level: dire camel, dire horse, large scorpion, or a hippopotamus. At ninth level: huge dire scorpion, dire war camel, dire warhorse. A cavalier may choose not to change his mount, at which point the mount is treated as having the characteristics of it's same animal one size category larger and all its stats increase by 1.

Sand Empathy (Sp): At 1st level the cavalier can speak mentally to any Sandkin[1] creature within 30ft. The Sandkin[1] creature will understand whatever the thrallian cavalier says to it. The cavalier can pinpoint the exact location of any sandkin[1] creatures within 30ft, even if he can't see them. He can use the Handle Animal skill with sandkin. For the purposes of qualifying for prestige classes and feat prerequisites he is treated as having the SandskimmerSS feat.

Sand Endurance (Sp): At 1st level, the thrallian cavalier can use wall of sandSS spell as a spell-like ability four times a day (with a caster level equal to the character's thrallian cavalier class level).

Choking Sands (Sp): At 2nd level the thrallian cavalier can use choking sandsSS as a spell-like ability three times a day (with a caster level equal to the character's thrallian cavalier class level).

Sand Protection (Ex): At 2nd level as a swift action, the thrallian cavalier can use Protection from Dessication spellSW The cavalier's mount is considered to be under the effects of the spell as well.

Summon Sandkin IV (Sp): At 5th level the thrallian cavalier can use summon monster IVMM to summon a waste creature of appropriate power as a spell-like ability once per day (with a caster level equal to the character's thrallian cavalier class level).

Rebuke Sandkin (Su): At 3rd level the thrallian cavalier may rebuke sandkin[1] creatures as a cleric would rebuke undead. He rebukes sandkin as a cleric of three levels lower would. The character's sand mount is unaffected by his rebuke attempts, and receives a +4 bonus against other thrallian cavalier's rebuke attempts.

Perfect Rider (Ex): At 4th level, the thrallian cavalier gains a +2 competence bonus to Ride and Swim checks when riding a sand mount. This increases to a +4 competence bonus at 6th level.

Master Rider (Ex): At 6th level, the thrallian cavalier does not suffer penalties to AC due to charging while mounted on a sand mount, and only takes half of the normal penalty to ranged attacks due to being mounted.

Summon Sandkin V (Sp): At 7th level the thrallian cavalier can use summon monster VMM to summon a waste creature of appropriate power as a spell-like ability once per day (with a caster level equal to the character's thrallian cavalier class level).

Sand Knight (Ex): While riding a sand mount, the thrallian cavalier gains a +2 competence bonus to attack rolls and AC.

Summon Sandkin VI (Sp): At 9th level the thrallian cavalier can use summon monster VIMM to summon a waste creature of appropriate power as a spell-like ability once per day (with a caster level equal to the character's thrallian cavalier class level).

Sand Calling (Sp): At 10th level the thrallian cavalier can use call stormSW as a spell-like ability once per day (with the caster level equal to the character's atlantean cavalier class level) to call forth a powerful sandstorm.

Sand Mount (Ex): At 11th level and every second level thereafter, the sand mount gains two Hit Dice. The hit dice should be taken from the base creature's racial die found in the Monster Manual or other appropriate books, namely Sandstorm.

Bonus Feat: At 11th level and every 3rd level thereafter, the epic thrallian cavalier gains a bonus feat chosen from the following list: Armor Skin, Combat Archery, Damage Reduction, Devastating Critical, Dire Charge, Distant Shot, Energy Resistance, Epic Endurance, Epic Leadership, Epic Prowess, Epic Toughness, Epic Weapon Focus, Epic Weapon Specialization, Exceptional Deflection, Improved Combat Reflexes, Improved Manyshot, Improved Stunning Fist, Improved Whirlwind Attack, Infinite Deflection, Instant Reload, Legendary Commander, Legendary Rider, Legendary Wrestler, Overwhelming Critical, Penetrate Damage Reduction, Perfect Two-Weapon Fighting, Reflect Arrows, Spellcasting Harrier, Storm of Throws, Superior Initiative, Swarm of Arrows, Two-Weapon Rend, Uncanny Accuracy. In addition to the feats on this list, the epic thrallian cavalier may treat any feat designated as a fighter bonus feat as being on the atlantean cavalier bonus feat list. An thrallian cavalier must still meet all prerequisites for a bonus feat, including ability score and base attack bonus minimums.

Sand Mount[edit]

Sand mounts have the following game statistics (on top of their base racial statistics).

Table: The Frost Mount

Hit Die: d10

Rider's Level Size HD Natural Armor Special
1st T/S 2 +0 Sand Mount Traits, Unbreakable Sand Bond
2nd M 4 +0 Evasion, Share Spells
3rd L 6 +1 Uncanny Dodge, Shrink 3/day
4th H 8 +1 Fast Movement +10ft
5th H 8 +2 Mount Bonus Feat
6th H 10 +2 Fast Movement +20ft
7th H 10 +3 Slippery Mind
8th H 12 +3 Fast Movement +30ft
9th H 12 +4 Mount Bonus Feat
10th H 14 +4 Improved Evasion

Class Skills (2 + Int modifier per hit die)
Climb (Str), Spot (Wis), Hide (Dex), Move Silently (Dex), Jump (Dex) and Use Rope (Dex).

Class Features[edit]

All the following are class features of the sand mount.

Sand Mount Traits: The sand mount must either be a cunning scout or a desert hunter, but with the Dungeon Master's permission, it may be a specific desert creature not mentioned above. Use the base statistics for a race of the mount’s kind, but make the following changes.

Hit Dice: The number of d10 Hit Dice that the sand mount has (this replaces its normal Hit Dice). A sand mount has a good base attack bonus and good Fortitude and Reflex saves. Treat the sand mount as a character with class levels equal to the mount’s HD. A sand mount gains additional skill points and feats for bonus HD as normal for advancing a monster’s Hit Dice. The sand mount has 2+ Intelligence modifier skill points per Hit Die, but must train for one hour a day with the thrallian cavalier in order to gain these skill points.

Natural Armor: The number noted here is an improvement to the sand mount’s existing natural armor bonus and both stack.

Attacks: The sea mount can make multiple attacks with his bite (or tail attack depending on the creature) attack as if it where a manufactured weapon, with a -5 penalty to each extra attack. The mount cannot use its gore ability (if it has one) while making multiple attacks.

Size: Unless chosen by the player and approved by the dungeon master, the sand mount is the same (where appropriate) or one size category larger than the cavalier. If a cavalier chooses not to change animals for their base mount at the appropriate levels, the creature's stats improve as if one size category larger than it truly is, however it's true size does not alter.

Type: The sand mount's type changes from animal to magical beast (augmented animal).

Ability Scores: The sand mount's ability scores are chosen using the elite array, replacing the 10 and the 8 with the cavalier's Intelligence and Charisma scores, which the frost mount shares. The racial ability score adjustments, Armor Class and attack modifiers and bite damage due to size for the sand mount are shown on Table: Sand Mount Adjustments by Size. For details on sand mounts see the thrallian cavalier's specific chosen creature's base statistics in it's source book (typically the Monster Manual or Sandstorm).

Optionally a Dungeon Master may allow their player to roll 4 sets of 4d6 discarding the lowest die and arrange the results among the sand mount's Strength, Dexterity, Constitution, and Wisdom scores.

Table: Sand Mount Adjustments by Size
Size Str Dex Con AC/Attack Bite Damage
Tiny -8 +6 +0 +2 1d3
Small -4 +6 +0 +1 1d4
Medium +0 +6 +2 +0 1d6
Large +4 +6 +2 -1 1d8
Huge +8 +6 +2 -2 2d6

Unbreakable Sand Bond (Su): The sand mount shares a bond with his cavalier rider that transcends the physical. The mount assumes the rider's alignment. If an thrallian cavalier dies, the sand mount dies 2d10 days later as a result of depression. If the sand mount dies the cavalier must attempt a Fortitude saving throw of DC 25. If the saving throw is failed, the cavalier loses 2 hit points per thrallian cavalier level. He will then go into a rage for 1d12 + (her Constitution modifier) rounds as if he was a 1st level barbarian.

At all times, the sand mount and cavalier can communicate empathetically and telepathically, see out of each others eyes, and can locate each other as if by the locate creature spell.

The thrallian cavalier automatically passes Ride checks to attack while mounted and to control his mount in battle when mounted on his sand mount, and has full control over his mount's speed at all times. The thrallian cavalier and his mount share the same initiative, which is rolled using their highest initiative bonus (The cavalier's or the mount's).

Shrink (Sp): 3 times per day at 3rd level, the sand mount can reduce its size to any size category smaller than itself as a swift action. This spell-like ability lasts until the mount decides to end it, which it can do as a free action. The caster level is 1 for this ability. This ability works like a stackable reduce person.

Fast Movement (Ex): At 4th level, the sand mount's land speed increases by +10ft. At 6th level, the bonus to the sand mount's speed increases by an additional +10ft and increases again at 8th level by another +10ft. This is taken into account when the mount is not being commanded by it's rider, at which point it's combined tactical speed and charge speed can be seen on the chart at the top of the page.

Mount Bonus Feat: The sand mount may select a bonus feat from the following list: Improved Critical (bite) or (tail), Ability Focus, Acrobatic, Combat Reflexes, Dodge, Improved Initiative, Improved Natural Attack (bite) or (tail), Lightning Reflexes, Power Attack, Improved Bull Rush, Improved Overrun, Stealthy and Weapon Focus (bite) (when appropriate based on the creature, Weapon Focus (claw), (tail), or such may be chosen).

Evasion (Ex): If the sand mount makes a successful Reflex saving throw against an attack that normally deals half damage on a successful save, he instead takes no damage. Evasion can be used only if the sand mount is wearing light armor or no armor. A helpless sand mount does not gain the benefit of Evasion.

Share Spells (Ex): At the thrallian cavalier's option, he may have any spell (but not any spell-like ability) he casts upon himself also affect his sand mount. The sand mount must be within 5 feet of him at the time of casting to receive the benefit. If the spell or effect has a duration other than instantaneous, it stops affecting the sand mount if he moves farther than 5 feet away and will not affect the mount again, even if it returns to the atlantean cavalier before the duration expires. Additionally, the thrallian cavalier may cast a spell with a target of “You” on his sand mount (as a touch range spell) instead of on himself. A thrallian cavalier and his mount can share spells even if the spells normally do not affect creatures of the companion’s type [magical beast (augmented Animal)].

Uncanny Dodge (Ex): The sand mount retains his Dexterity bonus to AC (if any) even if he is caught flat-footed or struck by an invisible attacker. However, he still loses his Dexterity bonus to AC if immobilized.

Slippery Mind (Ex): If a sand mount with slippery mind is affected by an enchantment spell or effect and fails his saving throw, he can attempt it again 1 round later at the same DC. He gets only this one extra chance to succeed on his saving throw.

Improved Evasion (Ex): This ability works like Evasion, except that while the sand mount still takes no damage on a successful Reflex saving throw against attacks he henceforth takes only half damage on a failed saving throw. A helpless sand mount does not gain the benefit of Improved Evasion.

Ex-Thrallian Cavaliers[edit]

The thrallian cavalier can make a decision to which the sea mount objects. Switching to an opposing deity, offending the sand mount, ceasing to revere sandkin, taking the mount for granted, or otherwise upsetting the mount can cause the sandkin to leave the cavalier. The thrallian cavalier loses all its supernatural and spell-like abilities gained from being a thrallian cavalier. The Cavalier can make amends only by contacting the sand mount to apologize. If the mount accepts the apology, the sand mount will come back to the rider and the cavalier will regain all thrallian cavalier class features.

If the thrallian cavalier's sand mount dies, the cavalier can never have another sand mount to replace his deceased sandkin (as he will never again gain levels in the class to "change" creatures). However, the thrallian cavalier can spend one hour in a ritual to bring the sand mount to life. The sandkin cannot be brought back to life in any other way (including methods that make the mount undead). The sand mount will then return to life in his original body. If the deity that the rider worships believes the cavalier to be unworthy, then the sand mount will not return to life. If the deity changes his mind about the cavalier's worth at a later date, the ritual can be undertaken again. The sand mount's body cannot be damaged, disfigured or destroyed unless the thrallian cavalier is also dead (and will be repaired instantly if the thrallian cavalier returns to life), and can be called to the thrallian cavalier when he wishes to perform the ritual.

Campaign Information[edit]

Playing an Thrallian Cavalier[edit]

Adventure: Thrallian cavaliers usually adventure around the deserts of [{Valgora (DnD Campaign Setting)|Valgora]], patrolling the dunes and meeting the wild creatures of the wasste. They also adventure in order to fulfill a task appointed to them by their people, or to find new candidates to train in the art of the thrallian cavaliers. Neutral thrallian cavaliers are rather obscure in their purposes. Their objectives are not known.

Characteristics: Thrallian cavaliers are totally obsessed with the wild sands of the world - their minds, bodies and souls are tied to the oceans.

Thrallian cavaliers rarely stop thinking about the desert or their sandkin in some way (even if it is just a corner of the mind considering some dune theory), and they often weave waste-knowledge into conversations simply because they can't help it! They simply love the desert and it's denizens with their hearts, minds and souls, and can't imagine others not doing the same to some degree. A thrallian cavalier's idea of impressing someone is showing off their knowledge of the wastes. Because of this obsession, most thrallian cavaliers marriages are to another cavalier or to a member of a waste race or settlement.

The thrallian cavaliers and his mount are as one: they are mentally bonded and share their thoughts. The rider and the sandkin each have their own personality, opinions, and desires. However, both cavalier and mount are privy to the thoughts, opinions, and desires of the other.

Races: The desert citizens of Valgora are the most likely in all the world to become thrallian cavaliers. This includes the reverent humans of the Vargach Valley, the sand dwarves of Thrall's Desert, and other races tied to the shifting sands.

Combat: The thrallian cavaliers takes the party role of a fighter and fast-attacker. Their skill in arms and their sea mounts make them ideal front-line fighters. The sandkin's speed makes them excellent at fast attacking and getting where they are needed.

Advancement: A thrallian cavaliers should probably consider taking levels in fighter to gain specialized mounted combat bonus feats.

Resources: Thrallian cavaliers may be given various magic or helpful items to help them on their quests by the other thrallian cavaliers loyal to the sands.

Thrallian Cavaliers in the World[edit]

The shifting sands are my home. Ever moving, ever watchful, as am I.
—Bamidele, thrallian cavalier

NPC Reactions: Desert races treat the thrallian cavaliers as honored citizens of the waste.

Thrallian Cavalier Lore[edit]

Characters with ranks in Knowledge (local) can research thrallian cavaliers to learn more about them. When a character makes a skill check, read or paraphrase the following, including information from lower DCs.

Knowledge (local)
DC Result
11 Thrallian Cavaliers are desert wardens who ride waste animals and patrol the sands of the world.
16 Thrallian Cavaliers are mentally bonded to their mount.
21 If a Thrallian Cavalier is slain in battle, its mount dies shortly after in depression and remorse.
26 The Thrallian cavalier's mount is actually so closely bonded that he is another aspect of the cavalier's personality.

Thrallian Cavaliers in the Game[edit]

Adaptation: If not in Valgora, simply call members of this class Desert Cavaliers or replace them with a desert region or country in your own campaign's name. Thrallian is the class's Valgorian main name, named after Thrall's Desert.

Sample Encounter: If the PCs enter the deserts of Valgora, they may chance upon Bamidele at the dungeon master's digression.

EL 11: Bamidele, a thrallian cavalier, guards a hidden ruin in the sands of Thrall's Desert. He will attack any and all intruders (unless they immediately show peace, allowing them on the site) dealing non-lethal damage. If successful, he will imprison the individuals for questioning and send them to his land-dwelling associates in the Talaran docks.


CR 11

Male Human barbarian 6/Thrallian Cavalier 4
CG Medium humanoid
Init/Senses +3/darkvision 60 ft.; Listen +1, Spot +1
Aura Good
Languages Common, Asherati, Elven, telepathy with Adebowale
AC 20, touch 13, flat-footed 17
(+7 armor, +3 Dex)
hp 56 (10 HD)
Immune water
SR 19
Fort/Ref/Will +5/+5/+1 (+2 against spells and spell-like abilities); +2 against enchantment
Speed 20 ft.
Melee +1 holy lance +14 (1d8+4/19-20)
Base Atk/Grp +10/+13
Atk Options rage 2/day
Special Actions rebuke sandkin 5/day (+2, 2d6+3, 1st), choking sands 20 ft. (40 ft.).
Spell-Like Abilities (CL 4th):
At will—detect water
3/day—sand protection
4/day—sand endurance (DC 14)
Abilities Str 17, Dex 16, Con 11, Int 10, Wis 8, Cha 14
SQ sand empathy, perfect rider +2
Feats Exotic Weapon ProficiencyB (hand crossbow), Mounted Combat, Spirited Charge, Aquatic Shot, Spirited Charge.
Skills Handle Animal +11, Knowledge (nature) +11, Ride +16, Search +2, Spot +1, Listen +1, Use Rope +10
Possessions +1 holy lance, +3 scale mail
Patron Deity Grendale
Adebowale, Sand Mount

CR —

dire scorpion
CG Huge magical beast (augmented animal)
Init/Senses +5/darkvision 60 ft., tremorsense 60 ft.; Listen +1, Spot +1
Languages telepathy with Bamidele
AC 24, touch 13, flat-footed 19; uncanny dodge
(–2 size, +5 Dex, +7 natural, +2 armor)
hp 69 (10 HD)
Resist evasion
Fort/Ref/Will +11/+12/+3
Speed 50 ft. (10 squares), climb 30 ft.; Fleet of Foot, Run
Melee Claw +15 melee (3d6+6) or
Melee Tail sting +10/+5 melee (2d8+8 + poison)
Space/Reach 15 ft./10 ft.
Base Atk/Grp +9/+23
Special Actions shrink 3/day, web
Abilities Str 23, Dex 20, Con 17, Int 10, Wis 12, Cha 14
SQ fast movement, share spells, unbreakable sand bond
Feats Fleet of Foot, Improved Natural Attack (bite), Run
Skills Climb +23, Hide +8, Jump +25, Spot +16.
Possessions leather armor barding
Shrink (Sp) Three times per day, as a swift action, Adebowale can reduce its size to any size category smaller than itself as though affected by a stackable reduce person spell for each reduction in size category. This spell-like ability lasts until it decides to end it, which it can do as a free action. The caster level is 1st for this ability.
Unbreakable Sand Bond (Su) Adebowale shares a bond with Bamidele that transcends the physical. It has Bamidele's alignment. If Bamidele dies, Adebowale dies 2d10 days later from depression. If it dies then Bamidele must attempt a Fortitude saving throw of DC 25. If the saving throw is failed, Bamidele loses 8 hit points. He will then go into a rage for 1d12 rounds as if he was a 1st level.

At all times, Adebowale and Bamidele can communicate empathetically and telepathically, see out of each others eyes, and can locate each other as if by the locate creature spell.

Bamidele automatically passes Ride checks to attack while mounted and to control Adebowale in battle when mounted on it. He has full control over Adebowale's speed at all times. Bamidele and Adebowale share the same initiative, which is rolled using Araënû’s initiative bonus. barbarian.


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Any creature available on the sand mount list.

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