Barbarian

“I have slain fifteen foes to my right and another fifteen to my left. I don’t think it too many.”Globe2.3.bmp

Des’tro Roth

From the barren wastes of the Sunless South and the hellish jungles of Rajiin come courageous, some might say fearless, fighting men and women. Civilized people call them barbarians or berserkers and suspect them of wanton marauding, heathen beliefs and terrible crimes. These barbarians, though, have proven their worth and honor to those who do not fear them. To those who would challenge them, they have proven their stubborn deadliness, reckless bravery, steadfastness and commitment.

Background: A life of adventure is often the only hope a barbarian might have of settling into civilized society. Their cultural background does not prepare them for a life in mundane employment. Indeed, their own society has nurtured them to a life well-suited wandering the wilderness, ever vigilant for danger. They may adventure to slay hated foes or they might adventure simply to hunt and provide food and safe haven for their people. They also have a stubborn and superstitious distrust of the Heavenborn regardless of which side of the Ever-After War they might fight for.

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Barbarians are found all around the world wherever there is uncivilized land or frontier. A barbarian adventurer might have been dragged into civilized society as a captured slave (and perhaps since escaped), he might be a part of a band of mercenaries hired by a rich patron to fight a foreign war, or he might simply have wandered into a civilized nation attracted by the promise of wealth or drawn by curiosity. Other barbarians might scorn civilization, avoiding it altogether or waging a guerrilla war upon it. Barbarians, who call themselves warriors, do not feel any special affinity for one another unless they happen to be from the same tribe or clan.

Other Classes: As people that commonly exist outside of established society, barbarians favor allies who are greenbonds, rangers and totem warriors. Many barbarians respect the abilities of akashics and bards. Barbarians have a superstitious distrust and enmity for most of the ‘modern’ classes associated with the rise of the Shoshannic Church. As such, barbarians harbor no love most clerics, druids or paladins.

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Barbarian Archetypes

First Age: Many sibeccai who still live freely in the Western Lowlands are barbarians. The lamia tribes of the far northern deserts are predominantly barbarians. Many of the troglodytes that live in the Zergoa Mountains are barbarians and even more of the scorpus. Barbarians often live lives of captivity, owned by the ruling classes of the city-states. These slaves are deemed to wild to be used as guardsmen and so they are used as gladiators in the arenas and fighting pits.
NPCs: Bareshar, Hagga the Howler, Omar al-Talilal, The Orange Crush.

Second Age: Although the majority of the people in Rajiin live within the civilized nations of Lano and Nlalok many lizard folk still live outside the borders of these lands as tribal barbarians. A few of the lycanfey and many of the kobolds living in the jungles and mountains of Rajiin are barbarians.
NPCs:

Third Age: The Eosian Empire retreated and left the shore of the Feyen Isles some four hundred years ago. While many of the societal advances remained in their wake, many of the native faen peoples still reveled in their ancient ways and lived as barbarians in the forests and hills. In the far west the centaurs had long resisted the invading Northern Summanians and these highland warriors heavily favor the barbarian class. The lycanfey of the deep forests often live as barbarians hunting and adventuring from their dens and resisting the encroachment of civilization. Rus invaders from Helluland in Western Summan have settled the lands of Wisbech along the northern coasts and many of these bugbear invaders are barbarians.
NPCs: The merciless gnome bandit that plagues the forests of The Midden Marches. The honorable bugbear berserker that wages a guerrilla war against the burgeoning cities of Tyrr.

Fourth Age: Poverty exists at epidemic proportions within the massive continent of Summan – particularly in the western portion of the continent. Many people born to those so poor they must live as outlaws and poachers in the forests choose barbarian as a class. In Eastern Summan the huge Yakka Empire (the largest empire in history) favors barbarians for its warriors. Throughout the continent foreign barbarians from lands as far away as Anupam, Cilgarren, Farid, the Feyen Isles, Rajiin and Skenfirth can be found living as slaves, escaped slaves or hired mercenaries.
NPCs: The fierce bands of walrusmen that hunt the unforgiving tundra of the Northern Wastes.

Skills

Skill Points at 1st Level: (4 + Int modifier) x4.
Skill Points at Each Additional Level: 4 + Int modifier.
Class Skills: Climb (Str), Craft (Int), Handle Animal (Cha), Intimidate (Cha), Jump (Str), Listen (Wis), Prophecy (Wis), Ride (Dex), Survial (Wis) and Swim (Str).

Hit Die: d12

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Class Features

Armor Proficiency: Light, medium and shields (except tower shields).

Fast Movement (Ex): A barbarian’s land speed is faster than the norm for his race by +10 feet. This benefit applies only when he is wearing no armor, light armor or medium armor and is not carrying a heavy load. Apply this bonus before modifying the barbarian’s speed because of any load carried or armor worn.

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Illiteracy: Barbarians are the only characters who do not automatically know how to read and write. A barbarian may spend 2 skill points to gain the ability to read and write all languages he is able to speak. A barbarian who gains a level in any other class (except racial classes) automatically gains literacy. Any other character that gains a barbarian level does not lose the literacy they already had.

Rage (Ex): A barbarian can fly into a rage a certain number of times per day. In a rage, a barbarian temporarily gains a +4 morale bonus to Strength, a + 4 bonus to Constitution and a +2 morale bonus on Will saves but he takes a – 2 penalty to Armor Class. The increase in Constitution increases the barbarian’s hit points by 2 points per level, but these hit points go away at the end of the rage when his Constitution score drops back to normal. (These extra hit points are not lost first the way temporary hit points are). While raging a barbarian cannot use any Charisma-, Dexterity-, or Intelligence-based skills (except for Balance, Escape Artist, Intimidate and Ride), the Concentration skill or any abilities that require patience or concentration, nor can he cast spells or activate magic items that require a command word, a spell trigger (such as a wand), or spell completion (such as a scroll) to function. He can use any feat he has except Combat Expertise, item creation feats and metamagic feats. A fit of rage lasts for a number of rounds equal to 3 plus the character’s (newly improved) Constitution modifier. A barbarian may prematurely end his rage. At the end of the rage, the barbarian loses the rage modifiers and restrictions and becomes fatigued (-2 penalty to Strength, -2 penalty to Dexterity, can’t charge or run) for the duration of the current encounter (unless he is a 17th-level barbarian, at which point this limitation no longer applies; see below).

A barbarian can fly into a rage only once per encounter. At 1st level he can use his rage ability once per day. At 4th level and every four levels thereafter, he can use it one additional time per day (to a maximum of seven times per day at 24th level). Entering a rage takes no time itself, but a barbarian can do it only during his action, not in response to someone else’s action.

Weapon Proficiency: Simple and martial.

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Uncanny Dodge (Ex): At 2nd level, a barbarian 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. If a barbarian already has uncanny dodge from a different class, he automatically gains improved uncanny dodge (see below) instead.

Trap Sense (Ex): Starting at 3rd level, a barbarian gains a +1 bonus on Reflex saves made to avoid traps and +1 dodge bonus to AC against attacks made by traps. These bonuses rise by +1 every three barbarian levels thereafter (6th, 9th, 12th, 15th, 18th, 21st and 24th level). Trap sense bonuses gained from multiple classes stack.

Improved Uncanny Dodge (Ex): At 5th level and higher, a barbarian can no longer be flanked. This defence denies a rogue the ability to sneak attack the barbarian by flanking him, unless the attacker has at least four more rogue levels than the target has barbarian levels. If a character already has uncanny dodge (see above) from a second class, the character automatically gains improved uncanny dodge instead, and the levels from the classes that grant uncanny dodge stack to determine the minimum level a rogue must be to flank the character.

Damage Reduction (Ex): At 7th level, a barbarian gains Damage Reduction. Subtract 1 from the damage the barbarian takes each time he is dealt damage from a weapon or a natural attack. At 10th level, and every three barbarian levels thereafter (13th, 16th and 19th level), this damage reduction rises by 1 point. Damage reduction can reduce damage to zero but not below zero.

Greater Rage (Ex): At 11th level, a barbarian’s bonuses to Strength and Constitution during his rage each increase to +6 and his morale bonus on Will saves increases to +3. The penalty to AC remains at -2.

Indomitable Will (Ex): While in a rage, a barbarian of 14th level or higher gains a +4 bonus on Will saves to resist enchantment spells. This bonus stacks with all other modifiers, including the morale bonus on Will saves he also receives during his rage.

Tireless Rage (Ex): At 17th level and higher, a barbarian no longer becomes fatigued at the end of his rage.

Mighty Rage (Ex): At 20th level a barbarian’s bonuses to Strength and Constitution during his rage each increase to +8, and his morale bonus on Will saves increases to +4. The penalty to Armor Class remains at -2.

Epic Attack Bonus: The barbarian’s base attack bonus does not increase after 20th level. However, the barbarian does receive a cumulative +1 epic bonus on all attacks at every odd-numbered level beyond 20th. Any time a feat, prestige class or other rule refers to ‘base attack bonus’, use the sum of the base attack bonus and epic attack bonus.

Epic Save Bonus: A barbarian’s base save bonus does not increase after 20th level. However, the barbarian does receive a cumulative +1 epic bonus on all saving throws at every odd-numbered level beyond 20th. Any time a feat, prestige class or other rule refers to ‘base save bonus’, use the sum of the base save bonus and epic save bonus.

Bonus Feats: The barbarian gains a bonus feat selected from the following list: Damage Reduction, Devastating Critical, Dire Charge, Epic Endurance, Epic Prowess, Epic Speed, Epic Toughness, Epic Weapon Focus, Fast Healing, Incite Rage, Legendary Climber, Legendary Leaper, Legendary Rider, Legendary Tracker, Legendary Wrestler, Mighty Rage, Overwhelming Critical, Ruinous Rage, Terrifying Rage and Thundering Rage.

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The Barbarian character class by Brian Asbury was first published in White Dwarf Magazine No. 4 and has since evolved through many iterations of our game. This version of the class is derived from the D&D 3.5 version written by Monte Cook, Jonathan Tweet and Skip Williams.

Artwork by Carl Critchlow, Darren Goodacre and Karl Waller. Used with love and not permission.

Cartography by Ian Hewitt.