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Bishop

A Base Class for the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game


Bishops are divine agents of wrath, doling out a fiery death to those who oppose the will of their sense of morality. Bishops are empowered directly by angelic energy- able to leave nothing but a scorched smudge where an evil creature once was. A bishop does not draw their power directly from a good aligned deity but rather from their passionate angelic servants. They are not naturally affiliated with any church in particular, but may hold positions within one on rare occasions.


Bishops are more hardline than clerics, often eschewing the philosophy of religion in favor of a more literal interpretation of dogma, and obsessed with the notion of the eradication of moral blights upon the world. They are more at home with inquisitors and even the occasional paladin. In fact, bishops get along well with most other divine classes but are often segregated from them; as they serve the holy host of angels rather than a particular deity. They have no qualms about working with a devout follower of a singular deity and are often enthused to find a kindred spirit.


Bishops are largely unconcerned with the layman- instead focusing on breaches of faith of good-aligned divine spellcasters, good-aligned outsiders, and the corruption of holy artifacts. They do not minister to the masses or lead holy armies, they root out the greatest evil afflicting the greatest good.


Relation to Other ClassesEdit

While not an alternate cleric, bishops fill many of the same roles. They function more like an evil cleric or invoker (found in Little Red Goblin Games’ Pact Magic) and may even step on the toes of a paladin.


Hit Dice: D8.


Role: Bishops are divine blasters with a no-nonsense approach to fighting. Like paladins, they do more damage against evil aligned creatures and employ a more powerful offense than defense. They uniquely interact with the alignment system, allowing them to shift their target’s alignment at great personal cost.


Alignment: Any Non-Evil

Bishops are servants of angels but not all are empowered for their purity of spirit. They are fierce defenders of the faith and revel in the destruction of evil. Their morals may not be beyond reproach, but never evil. Most are lawful or at least not chaotic, adhering to some dogmatic code. Bishops have more leeway than other members of the clergy because they are expected to root out evil in its den and destroy it by any means necessary.


Code of ConductEdit

While bishops do not have a uniform code of conduct, they must follow the tenets of their faith and mission. A bishop who gains an evil alignment or transgresses against his church or the teaching of his deities may be excommunicated. Only through hard work or an atonement spell offered by another member of the clergy of his god can he regain his position. An excommunicated bishop holds no power and thus loses access to all of his bishop class features save for his weapon proficiencies.


Starting Wealth: 5d6 × 10 gp (average 175 gp.). In addition, each character begins play with an outfit worth 10 gp or less.


Class SkillsEdit

The bishop’s class skills are Bluff (Cha), Diplomacy (Cha), Fly (Dex), Heal (Wis), Intimidate (Cha), Knowledge (history) (Int), Knowledge (local) (Int), Knowledge (planes) (Int), Knowledge (religion) (Int), Linguistics (Int), Perception (Wis), Sense Motive (Wis), and Spellcraft (Int).

Skill Ranks per Level: 4 + Int modifier.


Table #-1: The Bishop

Level

Base Attack Bonus

Fort Save

Ref Save

Will Save

Special

1st

+0

+0

+0

+2

Ascribe sin, bless corpse, holy light 1d6, sanctity, sense evil

2nd

+1

+0

+0

+3

Commentary, defender of the faith (+2)

3rd

+2

+1

+1

+3

Holy light 2d6, instruments of faith

4th

+3

+1

+1

+4

Angelic companion, defender of the faith (+3)

5th

+3

+1

+1

+4

Blessed blood, Holy light 3d6

6th

+4

+2

+2

+5

Commentary

7th

+5

+2

+2

+5

Holy light 4d6

8th

+6/+1

+2

+2

+6

Defender of the faith (+4)

9th

+6/+1

+3

+3

+6

Holy light 5d6

10th

+7/+2

+3

+3

+7

Angelic countenance, commentary

11th

+8/+3

+3

+3

+7

Holy light 6d6

12th

+9/+4

+4

+4

+8

Defender of the faith (+5)

13th

+9/+4

+4

+4

+8

Holy light 7d6

14th

+10/+5

+4

+4

+9

Commentary

15th

+11/+6/+1

+5

+5

+9

Excommunicate, holy light 8d6

16th

+12/+7/+2

+5

+5

+10

Defender of the faith (+6)

17th

+12/+7/+2

+5

+5

+10

Holy light 9d6

18th

+13/+8/+3

+6

+6

+11

Commentary

19th

+14/+9/+4

+6

+6

+11

Holy light 10d6

20th

+15/+10/+5

+6

+6

+12

Archbishop, defender of the faith (+7)

Class Features:Edit

The following are the class features of the bishop.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency:Edit

The bishop is proficient with all simple weapons and with light armor. He is not proficient with martial weapons, shields, or any sort of armor other than light.

Ascribe Sin (Su):Edit

At 1st level, a bishop can manipulate the nature of the souls of creatures by ascribing sin or even taking it away. He does this through a series of religious condemnations, exaltations and enforces them with the dictates of Heaven. This allows the bishop to temporarily shift the alignment of a creature, but at a penalty to themselves. As a standard action a bishop can target one creature within 30 feet of him (that he has line of sight and line of effect to) and change one facet of the creature’s alignment for a number of rounds equal to the bishop’s Charisma modifier. The creature receives a Will save (DC 10 + 1/2 bishop level (minimum 1) + Charisma modifier). If the creature makes the save, this has no effect. At 1st level, he may only do this once successfully per day (failed attempts do not detract from his daily limit). At 5th level a bishop can successfully change a creature’s alignment a number of times per day equal to his Charisma modifier. A bishop can end this effect prematurely as a swift action.


When changing the creature’s alignment he may shift the creature to either a Chaotic or Lawful alignment (on the chaos/law axis) or to Good or Evil (on the good/evil axis) but never to neutral alignment. A bishop can only change one aspect of the creature’s alignment. Subsequent re-applications of this spell only reset the duration or change what part of the alignment is being changed.


Characters, like paladins or antipaladins, who “fall” or have some other form of negative class-related implication tied to their alignment do not fall permanently, though they may lose access to class features as if they did. As an example: paladins/antipaladins lose access to all their class features (other than weapon proficiencies), clerics may lose access to class features and their spellcasting if moved away from their deities alignment, classes that cannot cast spells that oppose their alignment may find themselves unable to cast some of the spells on their spell lists, and there may be other roleplaying implications of this. Furthermore, the nature of the creature changes somewhat. While this does not necessarily make them less hostile or more friendly, it make cause a normally good character to act more in his own self-interest or make a typically chaotic monster to become cunning and disciplined if turned lawful.


Creatures with an alignment based-subtype (devils, angels, etc) who fail the Will save against this are afflicted with a terrible sense of inner turmoil that rocks them to their very core. While their alignment opposes their subtype (a good devil, a lawful protean, a chaotic inevitable, etc) the creature takes negative levels equal to 1/3rd the bishop’s level (minimum 1).


The bishop suffers for doing this. While a creature is under the effects of his ascribe sin he loses access to his holy light and defender of the faith class features.

Bless Corpse (Su):Edit

A bishop can take a full round action that provokes an attack of opportunity to bless a dead creature. Such a creature cannot be made into an undead. This has no effect on creatures that are already undead.

Holy Light (Sp):Edit

At 1st level, the bishop can fire a ray of divine energy from a holy symbol he is holding at will. As a standard action a bishop can make a ray attack, which is a ranged touch attack. This has a range of 30 ft. + 10 feet per 3 levels of bishop. This attack deals 1d6 holy damage + his Charisma modifier at 1st level. At 3rd level and every odd level thereafter a bishop’s holy light does 1d6 additional damage. A bishop may use his Charisma in place of his Dexterity to determine his bonus to his attack rolls with his ray of light. As a full round action a bishop may make as many holy light ray attacks as his base attack bonus allows. A bishop is required to wield a holy symbol to use his holy light ability.


Sidebar: Holy DamageEdit

Holy damage is the power of heavenly fury given form. Evil aligned creatures who are subjected to holy damage take an extra 2d6 points of damage per attack.

Sanctity (Sp):Edit

At 1st level, a bishop is surrounded by a constant sanctuary spell. The Will save required for this ability is DC 10 + 1/2 bishop level + his Charisma modifier. If the bishop takes a hostile action the effects of this ability are suppressed for 4 rounds. Taking a hostile action against a creature who is known to be an evil creature does not cause the bishop’s sanctuary to be suppressed. A bishop may recast this spell-like ability as a standard action once per day, warding himself once again from creatures who have succeeded on their save against this ability.

Sense Evil (Sp):Edit

At 1st level, a bishop constantly has detect evil active and cannot turn it off. A bishop can, as a move action, concentrate on a single item or individual within 60 feet and determine if it is evil, learning the strength of its aura as if having studied it for 3 rounds. While focusing on one individual or object, the bishop does not detect evil in any other object or individual within range.


Commentary:Edit

At 2nd level and every 4 levels thereafter, a bishop can modify their divine powers in a number of ways. They may select one commentary from the list below. A given commentary may only be selected once.

  • Burn the Heretics: The bishop can chose to have their holy light deal fire damage instead. This must be decided at the start of the bishop’s turn and once the choice has been made it remains in effect until the start of his next turn. A creature successfully damaged by this ability catches fire, taking 1d6 points of fire damage per damage dice of holy light per round unless they put themselves out). In addition, using this commentary with holy light adds 2 damage per d6 rolled for holy light. This is mundane fire that does not function in environments where fire is not feasible (such as underwater). As this is no longer holy damage, this does not cause extra damage to evil creatures. However, evil creatures who are set ablaze by this cannot put themselves out, even in water, for at least a number of rounds equal to the bishop’s Charisma modifier. This cannot be used in conjunction with the smite the sinner commentary.

  • Smite the Sinner: The bishop can chose to have their holy light deal electricity damage instead. This must be decided at the start of the bishop’s turn and once the choice has been made it remains in effect until the start of his next turn. In addition, using this commentary with holy light adds 2 damage per d6 rolled for holy light. A creature successfully damaged with this electricity damage must make a Fortitude save (DC 10 + 1/2 bishop level + his Charisma modifier) or be fatigued for a number of rounds equal to the bishop’s Charisma modifier. This cannot be used in conjunction with the burn the heretics commentary.

  • Biblical Canon: The bishop Increases the extra damage he deals to evil creatures with all holy damage from 2d6 to 3d6. If the bishop is at least 10th level, this improves to an extra 4d6.

  • Potent Blood: The damage from holy water created out of the bishop’s blood, or caused when an adversely affected creature grapples with him, is increased from 2d6 to 3d6. If the bishop is at least 10th level, this improves to 4d6. He must be at least 6th level to select this.

  • Light of Rapture: At a full round action the bishop can turn their holy light into a 30 foot cone or a 60 foot line rather than a ray attack. Creatures caught within the light can attempt a Will save (DC 10 + 1/2 bishop level + his Charisma modifier) to entirely avoid being damaged by the spiritual energy that is unleashed.

  • Shield Against Evil: The bishop who is benefiting from his defender of the faith class feature gains the third effect of a protection from evil spell constantly. (For your convenience, reprinted here: “The spell prevents bodily contact by evil summoned creatures. This causes the natural weapon attacks of such creatures to fail and the creatures to recoil if such attacks require touching the warded creature. Summoned creatures that are not evil are immune to this effect. The protection against contact by summoned creatures ends if the warded creature makes an attack against or tries to force the barrier against the blocked creature. Spell resistance can allow a creature to overcome this protection and touch the warded creature.”)

  • Chase the Devil: An evil summoned creature struck by the bishop’s holy light (or that fails against light of rapture) must make a Will save (DC 10 + 1/2 bishop level + his Charisma modifier) to avoid being cast back to its native plane. This effect functions like a dismissal spell, but does not have the 20% chance to sent the summoned creature to the wrong plane. If multiple creatures are struck on the same turn, this affects 2 HD worth of creatures per bishop level (minimum of at least 1 creature) and functions similarly to a banishment spell. As a bishop must always be holding a holy symbol to use their holy light class feature, in many instance evil creatures will count that as an object they hate for the purpose of overcoming spell resistance. He must be at least 10th level to select this commentary.

  • Clergymen-at-Arms: The bishop becomes proficient in all martial weapons, medium armor, and shields (except tower shields).

  • Deacon: The bishop raises the save DCs of his class features by 2.

  • Angel Wings: The bishop gives a set of angelic wings. This grants him a 60 foot fly speed with average maneuverability. He must be at least 6th level to select this.

  • Weapon of Holy Light: The bishop may infuse his weapon with holy power as a swift action, causing his next attack to deal his holy light damage in addition to normal damage. If the attack misses the effect is wasted.

  • Holy Brand: As a standard action a bishop can make a single holy light attack and ascribe sin at the same time. If the holy light attack hits, this also changes the creature’s alignment (as per ascribe sin) and then causes the damage associated with holy light. After this action the bishop’s holy light and defender of faith class features are disabled (as per normal). In addition, a small brand is superficially burned into the skin of the creature in a prominent location (back of the hand, forehead, etc) denoting the creature as a sinner to any creature who can make a DC 15 Knowledge (religion) check. The brand fades after 1 week.

  • Sin Scribe: When using the ascribe sin class feature the change of alignment lasts for 1 hour.

  • Verbose Commentary: A bishop with this commentary triples the range of their holy light.

Defender of the Faith (Su):Edit

At 2nd level, a bishop gains angelic protecting against the sedition of wicked things. The bishop gains a deflection bonus to his AC and a resistance bonus on save against attacks made by and effects created by evil creatures. These bonuses are equal to 2 + 1/4 his bishop level (minimum of +0 from his level, and thus a total minimum of +2) to a maximum of +7 at 20th level. These benefits are identical to the benefits, albeit much stronger, than those gains from the first benefit of a protection from evil spell. If a bishop is subject to such a spell, he gains the secondary and tertiary benefits of the spell but replaces the primary benefit with those from this class feature.


Instruments of Faith (Su):Edit

Starting at 3rd level, any melee weapon wielded by the bishop is treated as if it has the holy weapon enhancement. Once it leaves his grip it quickly ceases to have the benefit. However, if a bishop has the Throw Anything, Weapon Focus (any thrown weapon), or Point Blank Shot feat (or, at the GM’s discretion, another suitable feat that allows you to use ranged weapons more effectively) this applies to ammunition used for ranged attacks or thrown weapons. Such ammunition loses this ability after striking or missing a target.


In addition, any armor or shield worn by a bishop (should they become proficient in such things) grant the bishop a sacred bonus to their AC equal to their Charisma modifier. A bishop may only gain this sacred bonus on one piece of defensive equipment (though he may switch which piece is granting it as a free action).


Angelic Companion (Ex):Edit

At 4th level, a bishop gains the service of an angelic companion who aids him in his holy war against evil. This ability functions like the druid animal companion ability (which is part of the Nature Bond class feature) except he selects from a different list of companions. He may select a companion from the Angelic Companion section at the end of this class section. His effective druid level for this class feature is equal to his full bishop level. Should a bishop lose his angelic companion he gains 1 negative level until he fasts for 2 days and prays forgiveness for 8 hours to gain another.


Blessed Blood (Su):Edit

At 5th level, the very blood that pumps in the veins of a bishop is anathema to sinners. His blood, if drained (causing at least 2 points of damage), can turn normal water into a dose of holy water (as per the bless water spell).


In addition, creatures that are adversely affected by holy water (typically undead and evil outsiders) become visibly uneasy and disturbed (profuse sweating, trembling, they become bug-eyed with terror) when within 30 feet of a bishop. This causes metaphysical pain and they will immediately be revealed as having an adverse reaction if they fail a Will save (DC 10 + 1/2 bishop level + his Charisma modifier). This, effectively, allows the bishop to detect the presence of something that would be adversely affected by holy water when within 30 feet if the creature fails the Will save.


Finally, such creatures that grapple a bishop are counted as if they had been splashed with holy water, taking 2d4 points of damage at the end of each round they remain grappled by or with a bishop.

Angelic Countenance (Ex):Edit

At 10th level, the angelic energy the flows through a bishop starts to affect them. Physically they begin to take on more angelic features. They gain resistance equal to half their bishop level + their Charisma modifier against acid, cold, electricity, and fire while gaining an equal bonus on saves against petrification.


Excommunicate (Su):Edit

At 15th level, as a full round action once per day a bishop can make a touch attack against another divine caster and separate them from their deities or other divine power source. This causes them to lose access to any (Su) or (Sp) class features and spellcasting abilities from class levels that can cast divine spells (or, at the GM’s discretion, otherwise claim a connection to a divine source as the root of their power) for a number of rounds equal to the bishop’s Charisma modifier.


Archbishop (Su):Edit

At 20th level, when a bishop ascribes sin they can chose to keep either defender of the faith active or retain the use of holy light while the creature’s alignment is changed. In addition, a number of times per day equal to their Charisma modifier they may maximize the damage on their holy light class feature. This can be decided after the damage dice are rolled.

Angelic CompanionsEdit

CherubEdit

A cherub is a small-sized, genderless, humanoid with child-like features and two angelic wings. Despite their appearance, cherubs are fierce fighters. Though they appear to be humanoid, they are willing thralls of their bishops, unable to truly think for themselves. They speak in giggles and whispered nonsense.

LG outsider (angel, extraplanar, good)

Size Small; Speed 30 ft, fly 60 ft. (average); AC +1 natural armor, Attack slam (1d4), wing (1d4); Ability Scores Str 10, Dex 10, Con 10, Int 3, Wis 11, Cha 16; Special Qualities low-light vision, DR 5/cold iron or evil; Immune acid, cold, petrification; Resist electricity 10, fire 10; Spell-like abilities (at will) detect evil, daylight, aid (caster level equal to bishop level)

7th-Level Advancement

Ability Scores +2 Str, +2 Con +8 Cha

Special qualities Smite evil as a paladin of a level equal to their bishop, a number of times per day equal to 1/4th their bishop’s class level.


CassisianEdit

Cassian angles appear as winged golden helms with exceptional quality. They float, silently, ever vigilant in the defense of the bishop.

NG outsider (angel, extraplanar, good)

Size Small; Speed - ft, fly 60 ft. (perfect); AC +2 natural armor, Attack slam (1d4), Ability Scores Str 3, Dex 10, Con 14, Int 3, Wis 4, Cha 16; Special Attacks breath weapon (15-ft. line, 1d6 cold or 1d6 fire, Reflex (DC 10 + ½ HD + Charisma modifier) for half, usable every 1d4 rounds); Special Qualities low-light vision, DR 5/cold iron or evil; Immune acid, cold, petrification; Resist electricity 10, fire 10; Spell-like abilities (at will) detect evil, know direction (caster level equal to bishop level)

7th-Level Advancement

Ability Scores +2 Dex, +2 Con, +8 Cha

Special Qualities Smite evil 1/day as a paladin of a level equal to their bishop


Reverent ImpEdit

This impish creature barely maintains its flight as it mutters incessantly to itself.

NG outsider (devil, extraplanar, native)

Size Tiny; Speed 20 ft, fly 40 ft. (average); AC +1 natural armor, Attack sting (1d4); Ability Scores: Str 6, Dex 14, Con 10, Int 3, Wis 8, Cha 16; Special Qualities low-light vision, sycophant, clatter DR 5/good or silver; Immune fire, poison; Resist acid 10, cold 10; Spell-like abilities detect magic (at will), invisibility (self only, 1/day), suggestion (1/day) (caster level equal to bishop level)

7th-Level Advancement

Ability Scores +2 Dex, +2 Con +8 Cha

Spell-like abilities aura sight ACG (at will)


Bound DemonEdit

This demon is covered in holy runes, bound with chains or other such implements and has nothing but contempt for its situation and master but serves them faithfully in all things due to otherworldly laws even a demon can’t circumvent.

CE outsider (demon, extraplanar, evil)

Size Medium; Speed 30 ft; AC +1 natural armor, Attack 2 claws (1d6); Ability Scores Str 14, Dex 12, Con 12, Int 3, Wis 11, Cha 14; Special Qualities rage (as per barbarian, 6 rounds per day); Special Qualities low-light vision, DR 5/cold iron or good; Immune electricity, poison; Resist acid 10, cold 10, fire 10; Spell-like abilities (at will) detect good

7th-Level Advancement

Ability Scores +4 Str, +4 Con +2 Cha



Special Qualities Smite good as antipaladin of a level equal to their bishop, a number of times per day equal to 1/4th their bishop’s class level.

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