The World of Llowellen: Play-by-forum & Roll20 Virtual Tabletop.
“When falls the soldier brave,
Dead at the feet of wrong,
The poet sings and guards his grave
With sentinels of song.”
-Sentinels Song by Abram Joseph Ryan
Mortal, Fey and Heavenborn warmain can be found just as readily in every nation and on every continent throughout the Old World. While many warriors choose the Fighter profession, just as many become warmains.
The ring of battle is the clarion call of the warmain. In times of strife, no better refuge exists than behind his protective shield. Trained in battle, girded in heavy armor, and capable of withstanding unbelievable punishment, the warmain is the warrior’s warrior. He does not rely on quickness or fancy swordplay, but instead on might, determination, and stalwart bravery. The only thing stronger than his will is the power running through his massive limbs.
The warmain’s strength comes not just from his personal might, but from strategy and tactics. His is the way of the well-planned and well-prepared military campaign. He studies the histories and knows the stratagems of past warriors. He prefers to face an enemy with a plan in mind – and a backup plan for when something goes wrong.
Warmains are usually very serious – they go on quests and perform missions for some great purpose, whether it be to serve a lord, help a friend, earn a payment, or simply to secure an important area from threat. Many high-level members of this class end up as powerful lords ruling their own territories or as generals commanding their own armies.
Background: Sometimes warmains act as highly trained mercenaries. More often, they are elite soldiers or military leaders serving a powerful lord. Either way, they learn their skills through experience in military campaigns. First, however, they train in military colleges and prestigious and rigorous warguilds. The bonds of camaraderie and devotion forged in a warguild never diminish – each member learns both loyalty and leadership.
The only races whose members rarely become warmains are the faen and litorians, both of whom usually reject the concept of heavy armor and methodical military strategy. Giantish warmains have a long history of military victories and a high station in society. Some warmains like to remain encased in heavy armor so as to actually conceal their race and identity, just for the air of mystery.
Other Classes: Warmains sometimes have difficulty seeing eye to eye with the unfettered, but they know the value of shock troops and berserkers and deploy them as such. They also can appreciate the value of akashics and spellcasters as support personnel. Warmains admire the dedication of oathsworn, ritual warriors, and champions, although they can be dangerously foolhardy in their pursuit of their goals. Mage blades and totem warriors make good allies, as their abilities complement a warmain’s. All in all, warmains can find a use for anyone in their strategy.
First Age: Warmain are the soldiers and officers enlisted to defend each city-state. They might be archers, charioteers or spearmen. Other warmain have deserted the army and live the life of outlaws in the deserts and mountains.
NPCs: Captain Doud, Rikard the Bull.
Second Age: Warmain are not only accomplished warriors but also skilled artisans and aggressive traders. While many warmain still hold traditional positions within the armies and fighting forces of the land almost eighty per cent of the common population has at least some rudimentary training as a warmain.
NPCs: The dire warlord threatening a land with strife and conquest is likely a warmain. The power-mad magister’s bodyguards are warmains. The aging warrior willing to don his armor one last time to defend his land is a warmain.
Third Age: In the war-torn lands of Feyen Isles warmain have ample opportunity to make their living. Many are professional soldiers either employed or shanghaied into defending their King. Many others are mercenaries operating in semi-professional bands that are available to the highest bidder. Warmain might also be outlaws living in the forests and on the run from justice.
NPCs: Lennor Boswell,
Fourth Age: In feudal Summan, the vassals of the ruling class form an entire warrior caste within society. In many Summanian societies warfare is so commonplace that entire male populations have at least some level of training in the warmain profession.
Skill Points at 1st Level: (2 + Intelligence bonus) x 4.
Skill Points at Higher Levels: 2 + Intelligence bonus.
Class Skills: Climb (Str), Craft (Int), Handle Animal (Cha), Intimidate (Cha), Jump (Str), Knowledge (Architecture) (Int), Knowledge (Engineering) (Int), Knowledge (History) (Int), Knowledge (Nobility and Courtesy) (Int), Ride (Dex), and Swim (Str).
Hit Die: d12
Armor Proficiency: Heavy, Light, Medium and shields.
Sturdy: At 1st level, the warmain gains the Sturdy feat for free. The character is free to take the feat again when available to him.
Weapon Proficiency: Simple, martial.
Bonus Feats: At 2nd level, the warmain gets a bonus feat. The warmain gains an additional bonus feat at 6th level, plus 10th, 14th, 18th, 20th, 22nd, 23rd, and 25th level. These are in addition to the feat that all characters get every third level. Draw these bonus feats from the following list: Armor Mastery, Armored Fist, Armored Wrestler, Bloody Strike, Bone Crushing Stance, Born to Iron, Bulwark of Indomitable Defense, Combat Reflexes, Crushing Weight, Exotic Armor Proficiency, Exotic Weapon Proficiency*, Great Fortitude, Fell-Handed, Flail Defense, Improved Critical*, Iron Wall, Linebreaker, Mighty Unarmed Strike, Mounted Combat (Ride-By Attack, Trample), Overreaching Stance, Power Attack (Cleave, Improved Bull Rush, Power Charge, Sunder), Ritual Combat, Shield Guard, Shield Mastery, Shield Specialization, Stomp, Stunning Blow, Sturdy, Tough Hide, Trample, Two-Weapon Fighting (Massive Two-Weapon Fighting), Warding Stance, Weapon Focus*, Weapon Specialization*.
Some of these feats are ceremonial feats. The character need not go through the ceremony (or pay for it) to get a bonus ceremonial feat; even Unbound characters can acquire ceremonial bonus feats in this way. A warmain cannot acquire some of these bonus feats until she has gained one or more prerequisite feats; these feats are listed parenthetically after the prerequisite feat. A warmain can select feats marked with an asterisk (*) more than once, but it must be for a different weapon each time. The character still must meet all prerequisites for a bonus feat, including ability score and base attack bonus minimums (but not truenames).
Weapon Specialization (Ex): On achieving 4th level, the warmain gains the Weapon Specialization feat with a melee weapon of her choice. Weapon Specialization adds a +2 damage bonus with the chosen weapon. The warmain needs to have Weapon Focus with that weapon to gain Weapon Specialization.
Crushing Blow (Ex): Once per day, the 8th-level and higher warmain can choose to channel great physical power into a single blow in melee combat (which can be a part of either a full attack or a single attack action). The attack, if successful, inflicts damage as if the weapon inflicted a critical hit—even if striking a foe normally immune to critical hits. If the crushing blow attack inflicts an actual critical hit, increase the critical’s multiplier by +1; thus, a longsword inflicts a × 3 critical hit, while a greataxe inflicts a × 4 critical hit. If the crushing blow attack misses, the ability is still considered used for that day. A crushing blow does not trigger special effects that occur only when critical hits occur, such as the decapitating power of a vorpal weapon. Starting at 15th level, the warmain can make two crushing blow attacks per day.
Armor Specialization (Ex): The 12th-level and higher warmain becomes proficient at moving so as to allow her armor to deflect the most possible force from each attack. The armor bonus for any armor the warmain uses increases by +1 for light and medium armor and +2 for heavy armor. So plate armor provides the warmain a +10 armor bonus rather than +8. Enhancement bonuses on the armor are not affected.
Combat Rites: Starting at 13th level, the warmain gains access to combat rites, special abilities that stem from the ritualization of combat. Similar to the way a spellcaster casts spells, a warmain can activate a certain number of combat rites of a given rank per day, based on her level. The warmain can use any combat rite, as long as she can use rites of that rank. To use a combat rite, the warmain must have a Wisdom score of at least 10 + the rite’s rank. Combat rites do not require components, do not have a failure chance based on armor worn, and cannot be dispelled or suppressed. They are not magical.
The warmain gains bonus combat rites based on her Wisdom score.
Weapon Size Increase (Ex): Warmains of 16th level and beyond can use weapons one size category larger than themselves as one-handed weapons, and two size categories larger than themselves as two-handed weapons. Thus, a phrena warmain could use a greatsword in one hand (with a shield) or a giant’s sword in both hands.
Weapon Mastery (Ex): The 20th-level and higher warmain advances in the skills learned with Weapon Specialization, increasing the damage bonus to +4 rather than +2. The weapon chosen need not be the same weapon the character uses with Weapon Specialization, but the warmain still must have Weapon Focus with the chosen weapon.
The warmain was designed by Monte Cook and originally published in Monte Cook’s Unearthed Arcana, and more recently in Monte Cook’s Arcana Evolved. More options for the Warmain are available in Monte Cook’s Transcendence.
Cartography by Ian Hewitt.