General Prestige Class : Animal Lord

For the animal lord, a humanoid form is simply an accident of birth. In spirit, she belongs with the wild pack of wolves, the running herd of horses, or the dancing school of fish. Her nearly hairless, two-legged form is just a hindrance to being one with her true kind, but it is a hindrance she can overcome.

Each animal lord forms a bond with one group of animals. Apelords, bearlords, birdlords, catlords, equinelords, marinelords, snakelords, and wolflords all exist. Animals in her selected group accept the animal lord as a sister and a leader. They offer her their support, and she in turn watches over them.

Individual animal lords may approach their calling in very different ways. Some are simple defenders of their kind, content to live as part of the natural cycle of predator and prey. Others, believing that nature's creatures are meant to guard and ultimately improve this world, use their gifts to do good. Still others lead their animal brothers and sisters down the path of selfishness or vengeance.

Because they are so close to nature, elves and half-elves are the most likely races to lay aside the burdens of the humanoid form. Halflings and gnomes rarely become animal lords because of their strong community ties, and half-orcs are even less likely to do so because of their typically rapacious attitudes. Though rangers, druids, and barbarians are the most likely characters to adopt this class, some arcane spellcasters (especially bards) choose to become animal lords late in their adventuring careers.

A character can choose this prestige class more than once but must select a different group of associated animals and start at 1st level each time, levels of different animal lord classes do not stack when determining level-based class features.

Requirements

To qualify to become an Animal Lord, a character must fulfill all the following criteria:

Class Skills

The animal lord's class skills are Climb, Handle Animal, Heal, Hide, Jump, Knowledge (nature), Listen, SpellCraft, Spot, Survival, and Swim.

Skill Points at Each Level: 2 + Int modifier.

Class Features

The following are class features of the animal lord prestige class.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency: Animal lords gain no weapon or armor proficiencies.

Spells: An animal lord can cast a small number of divine spells. Her spells are based on Wisdom, so casting any given spell requires a Wisdom score of at least 10 the spell's level. The DC for saving throws against these spells is 10 + spell level + the animal lord's Wisdom modifier. When the table indicates that the animal lord is entitled to 0 spells of a given level (such as 0 1st-level spells at 1st level), she gets only those bonus spells that her Wisdom score allows. An animal lord prepares and casts spells just like a druid does, but she must choose them from the spell list below.

Animal Bond: Beginning at 1st level, the animal lord develops a bond with animals of her selected group (see above). For instance, the bearlord bonds with brown bears, black bears, and polar bears, and the apelord with monkeys, baboons, and apes. The marinelord's bond extends to porpoises, whales, and other aquatic mammals as well as fish. Because of this bond, all animals of the appropriate kinds automatically have a friendly attitude toward the animal lord.

Animal bond also allows the animal lord to have one or more animal companions chosen from among her selected group. This aspect of animal bond is a spell-like ability that functions like the druid's animal friendship spell, except that the animal lord can acquire companions only from among her selected group, and her maximum Hit Dice of animal companions (whether or not she adventures) equals twice her animal lord level. The character can train these animal companions just as the druid does.

Animal Sense (Su): At 1st level, an animal lord can sense any animals of her selected group within a radius of miles equal to her animal lord level squared. For example, a 6th-level bearlord can sense brown bears, black bears, and polar bears within thirty-six miles. This ability does not allow the character to communicate with the animals she senses.

Animal Speech (Ex): At 2nd level, an animal lord can converse at will with any animals of her selected group as though a speak with animals spell were in effect. The creatures' responses, of course, are limited by their intelligence and perceptions.

First Totem: At 2nd level, the animal lord gains a benefit related to her selected group from the list below.

Lesser Wild Shape (Sp): At 3rd level, an animal lord can use wild shape to take the form of any kind of natural animal in her selected group. This ability otherwise functions like the druid's wild shape, except that the animal lord can use it as often as desired. At 7th level, an animal lord can use this ability to adopt the dire form of an animal in her selected group, and at 10th level, she can use it to adopt the legendary form of an animal in her selected group.

Animal Farspeech (Sp): At 4th level, an animal lord can use her animal speech ability to converse telepathically with any animal of her selected group that she can sense (see animal sense, above).

Summon Animal (Sp): Also at 4th level, an animal lord can summon 1d3 animals of her selected group once per day. This ability functions like the appropriate summon nature's ally spell, except that the duration is 1 round per animal lord level. At 6th level, the animal lord can use this ability twice per day, and at 8th level, she can use it to summon 1d3 dire animals of her selected group.

Share Lesser Form (Sp): Beginning at 5th level, an animal lord can share whichever animal form she is currently using with a number of willing individuals equal to her animal lord level. This effect is identical to that of the polymorph other spell, except that its duration is 1 hour per animal lord level.

Second Totem: At 5th level, an animal lord gains a benefit related to her selected group from the list below.

Animal Perception (Sp): At 6th level, an animal lord can share the sensory input of any animal of her selected group that is within range of her animal sense.

Third Totem: At 8th level, an animal lord gains a benefit related to her selected group from the list below.

Share Greater Form (Sp): At 9th level, an animal lord can share her dire form with her allies. This ability is otherwise identical to share lesser form, above.

Animal Lord Spell List

Animal lords choose their spells from the following list.

Animal LordHit Die: d8
CLBABFortRefWillSpecialSpells per day
1st+0+2+2+0Animal bond, animal sense0---
2nd+1+3+3+0Animal speech, first totem1---
3rd+2+3+3+1Lesser wild shape10--
4th+3+4+4+1Animal farspeech, summon animal (1/day)11--
5th+3+4+4+1Second totem, share lesser form110-
6th+4+5+5+2Animal perception, summon animal (2/day)111-
7th+5+5+5+2Lesser wild shape (dire)2110
8th+6+6+6+2Third totem, summon animal (dire, 2/day)2111
9th+6+6+6+3Share greater form2211
10th+7+7+7+3Lesser wild shape (legendary)2221

Eight animal lords are presented here (the DM is free to create others). The various kinds of animals from the Monster Manual they are associated with are as follows.

Apelord:ape, baboon, monkey.
Bearlord:black bear, brown bear, polar bear.
Birdlord:eagle, hawk, owl, raven.
Catlord:cat, cheetah, leopard, lion, tiger.
Equinelord:donkey, heavy horse, heavy warhorse, light horse, light warhorse, mule, pony, warpony
Marinelord:crocodile, giant crocodile, octopus, giant octopus, porpoise, shark (all), squid, giant squid, whale (all).
Snakelord:constrictor, giant constrictor, viper (all).
Wolflord:dog, riding dog, wolf.

Totems

Each animal lord gains special abilities according to her selected animal type as she rises in level.

Source: Complete Adventurer
Masters of the Wild

Older Prestige class adapted to 3.5


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