FANDOM


Courtier

A Base Class for the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game

Courtiers serve their lords unerringly with intelligence, valor, and astute devotion. These skilled retainers find themselves at the forefront of conflicts, either in the shadows or centerstage. While traditionally courtiers are not the focus of a story, they are often the powers behind their lords’ thrones and facilitate the acts of greatness those in the limelight execute. They are expert managers, diplomats, and coordinators. Their loyalty is the stuff of legends, and many tales chronicle the gallant sacrifices courtiers suffered for their lords.


On the other hand, political schemers and ambitious, backstabbing courtiers exist. While they may want the power of the throne, these men understand the dangers that come with being in the spotlight. They prefer to make marionettes out of those with the power, and they see their lords as nothing more than pawns to be placated and used until they are no longer of any value to them.

Hit Dice: D8.

Alignment: Any Lawful 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 courtier’s class skills are Bluff (Cha), Craft (Int), Diplomacy (Cha), Handle Animal (Cha), Heal (Wis), Intimidate (Cha), Knowledge (all) (Int), Linguistics (Int), Perception (Wis), Profession (Wis), Ride (Dex), Sense Motive (Wis), and Stealth (Dex).

Skill Ranks per Level: 4 + Int modifier


Table: Courtier

Level

Base Attack Bonus

Fort Save

Ref Save

Will Save

Special

1st

+0

+0

+0

+2

Courtier path, courtier skill bonus, loyal retainer

2nd

+1

+0

+0

+3

Enhance status, path ability, path bonus feat

3rd

+2

+1

+1

+3

Favors, head down

4th

+3

+1

+1

+4

Loyalty, teamwork feat

5th

+3

+1

+1

+4

Pledged sword

6th

+4

+2

+2

+5

Fealty

7th

+5

+2

+2

+5

Path ability, teamwork feat

8th

+6/+1

+2

+2

+6

Loyalty

9th

+6/+1

+3

+3

+6

Power behind the throne

10th

+7/+2

+3

+3

+7

Teamwork feat

11th

+8/+3

+3

+3

+7

Shelter (1:1)

12th

+9/+4

+4

+4

+8

Path ability

13th

+9/+4

+4

+4

+8

Teamwork feat

14th

+10/+5

+4

+4

+9

Strength through loyalty

15th

+11/+6/+1

+5

+5

+9

Roszada

16th

+12/+7/+2

+5

+5

+10

Teamwork feat

17th

+12/+7/+2

+5

+5

+10

Path ability

18th

+13/+8/+3

+6

+6

+11

Shelter (1:2)

19th

+14/+9/+4

+6

+6

+11

Teamwork feat

20th

+15/+10/+5

+6

+6

+12

Loyalty beyond death

Class FeaturesEdit

All of the following are class features of the courtier.


Weapon and Armor ProficiencyEdit

The courtier is proficient with all simple weapons and with light and medium armor. Additional proficiencies may be acquired through courtier paths.


Loyal Retainer:Edit

The courtier serves a single lord. This can be another player character or an NPC. At 1st level, the courtier must select the lord he is following and swear an oath to serve him. In return, the lord is expected to take care of his retainer (the courtier), covering his room and board and any expenses he might incur while performing his required duties.


Should the courtier ever break his oath by acting in a manner that could cause harm to his lord (either politically or physically), his lord may dismiss him. A dismissed courtier loses access to his class features (other than bonus feats and proficiencies). The courtier is also dismissed automatically if his lord dies. One week after being dismissed, the courtier may seek to bind himself to the service of a new lord. A courtier who frequently switches his lord may earn a reputation for being unfaithful and may not be retained.


When within 30 feet of each other, both the courtier and his lord receive a morale bonus depending on the path the courtier choses (listed as “retainer bonus”). This bonus is granted only while both the courtier and his lord are conscious.


Courtier Paths:Edit

At 1st level, the courtier determines the kind of services he can offer his lord. This helps establish roleplaying and grants abilities related to his chosen theme path. Any ability that replicates the effect of a spell uses his courtier level as his caster level.


The courtier can choose a theme from the following list.


Harlequin: The harlequin serves his lord with cheer, humor, and lifts spirits with his nimble antics. He is an excellent distraction, spirit lifter, and morale officer. He can also make use of his dancer’s grace to evade dangers and live to serve his lord another day.


  • Retainer Bonus: +1/4 courtier level on Reflex saves

  • Bonus Feat: Dodge

  • Skill Bonus: Acrobatics and Perform (any). In addition, he treats both of these as class skills.

Path Abilities


  • Dancer’s Grace: At 2nd level, the harlequin gains the evasion class feature of the monk.

  • Comic Relief (Su): At 7th level, the harlequin gains the ability to tell a disruptive joke. As a swift action, he may cast hideous laughter as a supernatural ability by paying 2 loyalty points. The DC to save against this is 10 + the total ranks (not bonus) in his Perform (comedy) skill.

  • Swifter Grace: At 12th level, the harlequin gains the improved evasion class feature.

  • Quipster (Su): At 17th level, the harlequin can use his comic relief ability to affect a 60 foot radius centered on him rather than a single target. If used in this fashion, it costs 3 loyalty points rather than 2. The harlequin can raise the cost to 4 loyalty points to target only enemies; otherwise, this affects all creatures within the radius.


Sword: The sword of a lord is his personal protector and military advisor. In times of strife, the sword never leaves the sides of his charge and may become fast friends with his lord. The sword is specialized in personal security and is trained to toss himself on the blades of enemies rather than let his lord suffer a blow.


  • Retainer Bonus: +1/4 courtier level on attack rolls

  • Bonus Feat: Bodyguard

  • Skill Bonus: Perception and Intimidate

Path Abilities


  • Man-At-Arms: At 2nd level, the sword gains a bonus combat feat. He may count his courtier level as his fighter level for the purpose of qualifying for combat feats. In addition, he becomes proficient with all martial weapons.

  • Royal Guard (Sp): At 7th level, the sword may cast shield other at will. The sword may only target his lord with royal guard for an indefinite duration. If the sword pays 2 loyalty points, he may target any ally for a duration equal to 2 + his Charisma modifier (min 1) hours.

  • Royal Retaliation (Ex): At 12th level, the sword gains a bonus on damage rolls equal to his Charisma modifier against a creature who attacked his lord in the previous round.

  • Sword of the King (Ex): At 17th level, the sword automatically confirms critical hits against a creature who attacked his lord last round.


Politician: Embroiled in the political turmoil of the realm, the politician is a powerful ally for a lord, working behind the scenes to get things done.


  • Retainer Bonus: +1/4 courtier level on Will saves

  • Bonus Feat: Persuasive

  • Skill Bonus: Knowledge (nobility) and Linguistics

Path Abilities


  • Social Reprieve (Ex): At 2nd level, once per day per point of Charisma modifier, the politician may reroll a failed Diplomacy check. This may never be used more than once on a single roll.

  • Blackmail (Sp): At 7th level, by paying 2 loyalty points, the politician can cast suggestion using his courtier level as his caster level.

  • Play a Player (Sp): At 12th level, the politician gains the benefit of discern lies when he is within 30 feet of his lord. This only affects communication to and from his lord.

  • Damning Blackmail (Sp): At 17th level, by paying 5 loyalty points, the politician can cast dominate monster using his courtier level as his caster level.


Enforcer: Part spy and part thug, the enforcer is the man who will do what his lord is too soft to do. He carries out assassinations, seductions, and intimidations to ensure that people stay quiet. There is often blood on the enforcer’s hand and, should it ever be discovered, it becomes the enforcer’s problem, so his lord remains unblemished.


  • Retainer Bonus: +1/4 courtier level on Initiative checks

  • Bonus Feat: Weapon Focus (any)

  • Skill Bonus: Sleight of Hand and Stealth

Path Abilities


  • Dagger in the Darkness (Ex): At 2nd level, the enforcer gains the ability to use the sneak attack class feature of a rogue equal to 1/2 his coutrier level. An enforcer who flanks with his lord counts his rogue level as being equal to his courtier level for the purpose of determining sneak attacks. In addition, the enforcer becomes proficient in all martial weapons.

  • Pernicious (Ex): At 7th level, the enforcer becomes skilled in the use of poisons and never risks accidentally poisoning himself. Additionally, poisons crafted by an enforcer have their DC increased by +2.

  • Contract Killing (Ex): At 12th level, the enforcer can kill a creature whom his lord deems a threat. To attempt to assassinate the lord’s target, the enforcer must first first pay 3 loyalty points and declare his target as a swift action. The next sneak attack the enforcer makes within 3 rounds against the target he declared has the additional effect of possibly killing the target. If the sneak attack is successful and the target of this attack fails a Fortitude save, it dies. The DC of this save is equal to 10 + 1/2 the courtier’s level + his Charisma modifier. If the save is successful, the target still takes the sneak attack damage as normal, but it is immune to that enforcer’s contract killing ability for 1 day.

  • Lord’s Shadow (Ex): At 17th level, so long as he is within 30 feet of his lord, the enforcer can use his Contract Killing class feature when delivering any normal attack.


Courtier Skill Bonus:Edit

At 1st level, the courtier gains a competence bonus equal to 1/2 his level on two specific skills as defined by his chosen path (see Courtier Paths above).


Path Bonus Feat:Edit

At 2nd level, the courtier gains a bonus feat depending on what path the courtier choses (see courtier paths above). He gains this feat regardless of if he meets the prerequisites.


Enhance Status (Ex):Edit

At 2nd level, while within 30 feet of his lord, the courtier provides his lord with a +4 morale bonus on all Diplomacy and Intimidate checks.


Favor (Ex):Edit

At 3rd level, the courtier begins to learn the subtle art of leveraging favors. By making a Diplomacy check, he can redeem the favors he is owed, employ subtlety, or charm his way to achieve his goals.


The courtier does not start knowing how to use all the available favors. At 3rd level, the courtier knows 2 chosen favors. At 6th level and every 3 levels thereafter, he learns an additional favor.


At 3rd level, the courtier can request a favor only once a week. At 4th level and every 4 levels thereafter, he may request an additional time per week to a maximum of 6 times per week at 20th level. It takes 1d6 hours to claim a favor and may require additional roleplaying. Creatively stacking favors or combining them may provide a greater benefit. Favors may be combined; though they require different Diplomacy rolls (for example: securing the sale of an object and establishing a safe house for the sale).


The courtier can learn the following favors:


  • Loan: The courtier can acquire a loan of up to 1000 gp x his courtier level (DC 10 + 1 per 500 gp). However, not paying back the loan has its own consequences. It may have an interest rate or a steep penalty for failure to pay on time.

  • Secure Sale: The courtier can secure the sale of an object that cannot normally be purchased, such as the crown of a king, an ancient relic, etc. (DC 10 + 1 per HD of the creature with the highest HD who is in charge of the object). This favor does not purchase the object; it only makes it available for sale through back channels. The selling price may be modified by the danger involved in the sale (up to 50 x if it is highly illegal). Even with this favor, there is no 100% guarantee of delivery of the item.

  • Safety: The courtier can find a discreet and safe lodging for the night (DC 20). The price for the lodging must still be paid, but no trace or word of the location of those inside will be leaked.

  • Escape: The courtier can guarantee safe and discreet passage for a number of people equal to his courtier level x 2, including himself (DC 20). The traveling party cannot be tracked and information about their movements will not reach other people’s ears. This generally costs 10 gp per 5 miles of travel per person.

  • Equipment: The courtier can procure the sale of weapons and armor, even in a hostile environment where normally selling such things to the courtier would be treasonous (DC 20). This favor allows the courtier the opportunity to buy items of value for survival and defense.

  • Allies: The courtier can gain the services of normally unwilling allies. This favor may only be used on creatures who would normally not work with the courtier due to some moral, magical, or even more primal motivation. An exchange of goods or other form of payment for this mercenary service is common. The DC is based on the attitude of the creature. Unfriendly creatures have a DC of 10 + HD + Wisdom modifier; meanwhile, hostile creatures have a DC of 20 + HD + Wisdom modifier. A creature immune to mindless effects is still immune to this ability (such as most undead).

  • Passage: The courtier can obtain passage into a restricted area (DC 20). Examples of such areas are a sealed crypt of past kings, a restricted district, a confidential military area, a prison, a quarantine zone, etc.

  • Meeting: The courtier can conduct a meeting with a person or organization that is not normally in the habit of giving meetings (DC 10 + 1 per HD of the creature or of the creature with the highest HD who is in charge of the organization). Examples of some of these meetings are meetings with a thieves’ guild, a tribe of xenophobic savages, a demon lord, etc.

  • Message: The courtier can send a secret message that will securely and discretely reach his intended target with the greatest haste (DC 20). The message will reach the target within 1d6 days. This guaranteed delivery also includes the message being received by people who may not normally be open to receiving a message or may normally ignore the courtier. There may be fees associated with the transmission of the message because the favor only allows the courtier to assure the message will reach the intended target in the designated time. Even extreme isolation (such as being cloistered on another plane) cannot hinder this sort of message.

  • Detract: The courtier can cause political trouble for a single creature within his surrounding area (DC 10 + 1 per HD of the target creature). Examples of what the political trouble could entail are random inspection by the town guard, heckling by peasants, being trailed by private investigators, adventurers falsely seeking them for some information, petty thieves believing they have something of great value, or being called before the local governance to answer for trumped-up charges. The courtier cannot determine what method is used, only to whom it happens. The methods cannot be deadly or physically harming to the target, but will harass the target. It may however cause political, financial, or legal troubles for the person.


Additionally, the DC of the Diplomacy check should be modified based on the difficulty or dangers someone involved in the execution of a favor would have to suffer.


Danger

Example

DC Modification

None or Minimal

Secure the sale of weapons in a friendly town if the rogue made a fool of himself earlier and the blacksmith is holding a grudge.

+0

Casual

Leave a door unlocked to the castle to let the party in at night.

+2

Illegal

Offer refuge to an escaped prisoner.

+4

Dangerous

Sell the courtier the king’s signet ring.

+10

Deadly

Convince an imp to steal a demon lord’s crown.

+20


A favor that would enable a character (or party) to circumvent an adventure should always be unavailable to the character, regardless of the results of his Diplomacy check. The DM should carefully monitor the courtier's use of favors to ensure that this ability is not abused. The success or failure of a mission should not hinge on the use of a favor, and calling in favors should not replace good roleplaying or the use of other skills. The DM may disallow any favor deemed to be disruptive to the campaign.


Head Down (Ex):Edit

At 3rd level, the courtier learns how to walk without attracting attention and pass as a nobody when he needs to. He gains a +4 insight bonus on Disguise and Stealth checks to avoid attracting attention.


Loyalty (Ex):Edit

At 4th level, the courtier gains a pool of loyalty points equal to his courtier level. He regains these points after 8 hours of rest. Additionally, he regain 1 point if he performs an act of extreme selflessness for his lord, though never more than his Charisma modifier per day. He may spend these loyalty points in the following ways:


  • Expert Aid (1 Point): The courtier can automatically succeed on an aid another check for an ally.

  • Self-Sacrifice (1 Point): The courtier can transfer one negative, non-magical condition currently afflicting an ally to himself. The courtier must be adjacent to the afflicted ally in order for this transfer to work. This takes a full-round action and provokes an attack of opportunity. The target he takes the condition from must be willing or unconscious. The duration of the effect is also transferred.

  • Tactical Management (2 Points): The courtier can extend the use of one teamwork feat he possesses to all allies who can see and hear him for a number of rounds equal to his Charisma modifier as a swift action. This affects up to 5 creatures, in addition to the courtier and his lord.

At 8th level, the courtier can additionally expend loyalty points on the following new use for loyalty points:


  • Rally (3 Points): The courtier may provide succor to his lord or an ally as a standard action. The provides an amount of temporary hit points equal to his courtier level + his Charisma modifier. A creature cannot be restored above his maximum hit points in this fashion. Any additional temporary hit points are wasted. These temporary hit points last for rounds equal to the courtier’s Charisma modifier. A creature can only be affected by this class feature once per day. If the courtier is targeting his lord with this ability, the number of temporary hp granted is equal to 2 x his courtier level + his Charisma modifier.


Teamwork Feat:Edit

At 4th level, the courtier receives a teamwork feat as a bonus feat. At 7th level and every 3rd  level thereafter, the courtier gains additional teamwork feats. If the courtier’s lord is within 30 feet of the courtier, the lord also gains use of these bonus feats. The courtier must meet the prerequisites for each feat, but his lord does not.


Pledged Sword (Ex):Edit

At 5th level, if the courtier hits a creature, his lord gains a +2 morale bonus on damage rolls against that creature until the start of the courtier’s next turn. In addition, if the courtier’s lord strikes a creature, the courtier gains a +2 morale bonus on damage rolls against that creature until the start of the lord’s next turn.


Fealty (Ex):Edit

At 6th level, the courtier can purge himself of all fear by shouting an oath of fealty to his lord as a swift action. If he does so, he becomes immune to all fear effects for a number of rounds equal to his Charisma modifier. He must be within 30 feet of his lord to activate it and remain within 30 feet of his lord to maintain this effect. Should he ever end his turn more than 30 feet away from his lord, this effect ends. Additionally, when the courtier makes this oath, all allies (including the courtier’s lord) within 30 feet of him gain a +4 morale bonus on their Will saves against fear effects for a number of rounds equal to the courtier’s Charisma modifier.


Power Behind the Throne (Ex):Edit

At 9th level, the courtier improves his lord’s reputation score (for the Leadership feat) by +4. Alternatively, the courtier can grant himself and his lord a single re-roll each per day on a failed Charisma-based skill check. Once the benefit granted by this class feature has been chosen, it cannot be changed.


Shelter (Su):Edit

At 11th level, the courtier’s bond with his lord becomes so strong he can supernaturally shelter him from harm. Whenever his lord is reduced to 0 hp or lower, the courtier can sacrifice any number of hit points as a free action. Each hit point sacrificed in this manner prevents 1 point of damage to the courtier’s lord (for a 1:1 ratio). The courtier can only sacrifice hp in this manner if he is adjacent to his lord. A courtier cannot reduce himself below 0 hp by using shelter. The courtier must be within 30 feet of his lord for this class feature to work.


At 18th level, each hit point sacrificed prevents 2 points of damage to the courtier’s lord (for a 1:2 ratio).


Strength Through Loyalty (Ex):Edit

At 14th level, the courtier’s dedication to his lord allows him to resist even the worst forms of mental influence (mundane or magical). If he makes a Fortitude or Will saving throw against an attack that has a reduced effect on a successful save, he instead avoids the effect entirely. In addition, as long as he is within 30 feet of his lord he becomes immune to charm spells and spell-like abilities.


Roszada (Su):Edit

At 15th level, by paying 3 loyalty points, the courtier can swap places with his lord as a swift action. The movement does not provoke attacks of opportunity and may only be done if both the lord and the courtier are conscious, within 60 feet of each other, and able to see one another. The lord does not need to be willing. Roszada can be used as an immediate action in response to an attack roll against the courtier’s lord. If used in this manner, the attack resolves against the courtier instead.

  • Roszada is the Polis term for “castling” in chess.

Loyalty Beyond Death (Su):Edit

At 20th level, if at any time the courtier dies, as long as his lord survives and the courtier has at least 1 loyalty point at the time of his death, he is resurrected (as per true resurrection) 24 hours later. The courtier’s lord is required to be alive both at the time of the courtier’s death and at the time of his resurrection. If either of these conditions are not meet, the courtier is not resurrected.  


When he resurrects, he appears by his lord's side, ready to serve once again. The resurrection is generally done at an opportune time (the start of a critical moment during combat, during a court proceeding where the lord needs the aid of his courtier, etc).


A courtier resurrected in this fashion loses the ability to use loyalty points for 24 hours (He is assumed to have 0 during this time).







Section 15 OGL Copyright Declaration:Edit

• Open Game License v 1.0a Copyright 2000, Wizards of the Coast, Inc.

• System Reference Document. Copyright 2000, Wizards of the Coast, Inc.; Authors

Jonathan Tweet, Monte Cook, Skip Williams, based on material by E. Gary Gygax and

Dave Arneson.

• Pathfinder RPG Core Rulebook. Copyright 2009, Paizo Inc.; Author: Jason Bulmahn,

based on material by Jonathan Tweet, Monte Cook, and Skip Williams.

• The Book of Experimental Might. Copyright 2008, Monte J. Cook. All rights reserved.

• Tome of Horrors. Copyright 2002, Necromancer Games, Inc.; Authors: Scott

Greene, with Clark Peterson, Erica Balsley, Kevin Baase, Casey Christofferson, Lance

Hawvermale, Travis Hawvermale, Patrick Lawinger, and Bill Webb; Based on original

content from TSR.

• Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Advanced Player’s Guide. © 2010, Paizo Publishing,

LLC; Author: Jason Bulmahn

• Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Advanced Race Guide. © 2012, Paizo Publishing,

LLC; Authors: Dennis Baker, Jesse Benner, Benjamin Bruck, Jason Bulmahn, Adam

Daigle, Jim Groves, Tim Hitchcock, Hal MacLean, Jason Nelson, Stephen Radney-

MacFarland, Owen K.C. Stephens, Todd Stewart, and Russ Taylor.

• Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Ultimate Combat. © 2011, Paizo Publishing, LLC;

• Pathfinder® Roleplaying Game: Ultimate Magic™. © 2012, Paizo Publishing, LLC

• Little Red Goblin Games Race Guide I, Little Red Goblin Games LLC, Authors: Scott

Gladstein, Caleb Alysworth

• Politics & Power 2014, Little Red Goblin Games LLC, Authors: Scott Gladstein,

Christos Gurd, Dayton Johnson, Caleb Alysworth, Jeremiah Zerby

Ad blocker interference detected!


Wikia is a free-to-use site that makes money from advertising. We have a modified experience for viewers using ad blockers

Wikia is not accessible if you’ve made further modifications. Remove the custom ad blocker rule(s) and the page will load as expected.