Monks are pacifists at heart, abhorring violence and choosing to turn their backs on worldly possessions and vain ambitions, seeing them as the source of so much suffering. In order to do so they are typically forced to remove themselves from society and live in seclusion. This commonly leads to the establishment of monastic communities of like-minded individuals, brotherhoods, and sisterhoods dedicated to austere living and a common faith. When these monastic communities do interact with the world at large, it is generally to provide charity and attempt to alleviate the suffering of others. For some monks this includes the liberal application of hearty drink to cheer the soul.
Though similar in many ways to the monastic orders of the High Elven Shaolin and their offshoot sects, Monks do not practice combat whatsoever. When threatened they will defend themselves, however their typical strategy is simply to avoid combat all together. Monks have become so adept at avoiding combat that they can often move about a battlefield unnoticed and undetected, using their skills and their faith to aid allies, tend to wounds, or confuse their foes.
Typical Roles: Healer, Support/Utility, Stealth, Ranged Damage
Damage Types: Physical, Faith (Holy, Demonic, Psionic, Primal)
Class Mechanic:Faith and Stealth
Available Races:Wild Elf, Dwarf, Halfling, Human, Anakim
Initial Gold:Varies by race from 143.0 to 227.5
During Character Creation you may choose to use the Default Stat Line, before racial modifiers, instead of rolling for stats, or if after rolling ten sets of stats you don’t like the results
Natural Armor Proficiency: Cloth
Trainable Armor Proficiency: None
Natural Weapon Proficiency: Knives, Bludgeons
Trainable Weapon Proficiency: Staves, Whips
See Equipment section for details. When using weapons or armor that your class is not proficient with, see Combat Penalties. There is no level or title prerequisite to train in a new proficiency, however you must receive the appropriate Training.
Monks typically abhor combat and prefer the cloistered lives of their monasteries. However a times they are called upon to venture out into the wider world and when doing so they tend to hang back and support their allies while remaining unnoticed by the foe. Some bolder monks may use their knack for avoiding detection to thwart or suppress the enemy. However if the enemy becomes wise to their schemes, Monks do not have much capability to defend themselves and therefore rely upon the good will of their companions to protect them.
Monks carry the words of their Faith with them wherever they go. This most often includes the accepted mainstream Text of their faith, but also could include scrolls or letters by scholarly sources or revered monastic teachers of old. Regardless of how a Monk chooses to carry the teachings of their faith with them, they guard them with their lives for they are sacred and set apart. It is also an essential repository of knowledge that acts as a source book of sorts for all of the Faith Powers that they would have access to as part of their faith. Depending on the circumstance and character background, a GM might choose to restrict what Powers are recorded within those sacred writings and scriptures, however unless otherwise stated it contains the entirely of what would be available for their chosen Faith Path (i.e. if following the Holy Faith, it would contain all Holy Faith powers from all Disciplines)
From this repository, a Monk can memorize powers for day-to-day use and for use in combat. For additional details see Learning New Faith Powers.
Chanting and Ritual
In order to actually cast any of their powers, a Priest, Monk, or Shaolin must chant sacred verses or recite memorized scriptures while focusing their mind on the desired outcome. If the situation calls for it monks can chant under their breath, barely audible yet still invoking the names of the powers they serve without giving away their location. This must be paired with symbolic or ritualistic casting gestures that can be equally subtle when required. These gestures are often made with a symbol, relic, idol, or other such device of their faith (see Methods of Casting).
A Monk uses stealth to avoid combat, favoring skills that are not directly offensive but instead their allies or inhibit the fighting capabilities of their foes. Monks follow the standard rules for Stealth classes and Learning New Stealth Skills.
Stealth Costs for Monks are as follows:
- All offensive or aggressive Stealth actions reduce Stealth by 2 prior to taking a Stealth Test
- All offensive or aggressive Stealth instants reduce Stealth by 1 prior to taking a Stealth Test
- Increase the Stealth cost by 1 if the offensive or aggressive instant or action is NOT a Stealth skill (i.e. a regular attack action)
- All regular movement reduces Stealth by 1 per tabletop inch moved prior to taking a Stealth Test
Monks have the following restrictions for Stealth Disciplines:
- Primary Discipline: Suppression
- Available Disciplines: Thievery, Sabotage, Dirty Fighting, Survival, Subterfuge
- Forbidden Disciplines: Dirty Fighting
Upon character creation, Monks automatically gain the following Stealth skills (prior to applying level ups):
- Swift Kick (Rank I)
- Confuse (Rank I)
To learn new stealth skills require training unless they are upgrades (i.e. Rank1 Swift Kick -> Rank2 Swift Kick). Training is typically facilitated by the Monastic Order to which they belong.
Monks use the following chart for levelling up:
Max Faith Powers Known does not include Tier 0 powers (i.e. Prayers/Rituals/Systems/Mantras)
Leveling up only increases the capacity for known Faith Powers, to actually learn new powers see Learning New Faith Powers for details
Specializations are recommended for advanced players only, and are accomplished through the Secondary Skill system (see Specialist Skills). Monks may choose to specialize their skills in up to one weapon use, one combat style, one stealth discipline and/or one faith discipline , but can not have more than two specializations in total.
- Max one Weapon Specialist skill (choose from: Knives, Bludgeons, Staves, Whips)
- Max one Combat Specialist skill (choose from: Freehand, Paired Weapon, Freestyle, Sharp Shooter, Skirmisher, Peltast, Warder)
- Max one Stealth Specialist skill (choose from: Thievery, Dirty Fighting, Traps, Avoidance, Subterfuge)
- Max one Faith Specialist skill (choose from any Discipline associated with your Faith Path)
Monks prefer the quite and reclusive Monastic way of life, living and training in a community of believers. Their Monastic Order dictates a variety of regulations, doctrines, and sacred vows that the Monk must adhere to if they wish to remain living in the Monastery. Every Monastic Order is different, however in order to avoid the distractions of the carnal mind they are strictly organized by gender. These Brotherhoods and Sisterhoods, as they are so often called, tend to be found in remote locations away from the distractions of the wider world. It is a strict life style, but not without its rewards. And though power must ultimately be used for service to others, Monks can become quite powerful in their own right, particularly if rising to the elevated, though humble, rank of Prior or Abbott.
The titles awarded by a Monastic Order are as follows:
|Title||Level||Qualifications (monasteries are all male or all female)||Rewards & Consequences|
A Friar is an outlaw, only in the sense that they reject the Monastic lifestyle and choose to live among the people rather than cloistered behind the walls of a Monastery. In all other regards they appear as a typical Monk, even at times aligning directly with a particular Monastic order and deferring to their authority. However a Friar will not compromise in their belief that serving the people is essential to their Faith. For what good are powers bestowed from on high if they are not used to ease the suffering of others and uplift the downtrodden. Most Monastic Orders see the value of allowing Friar’s to operate just outside of their authority, particularly if they still pay a tithe back to the Monastery.
A Hermit Monk is one who follows a known Monastic Faith, adhering to its orthodoxy, doctrine or creed, but does not live within a Monastery or Monastic community. This could be because no Monastery exists in that area, or that the Hermit has simply chosen not to join, or has perhaps been excluded for some reason. While a Hermit still lives in seclusion like other Monastics, it is a solitary life which often leads to some measure of eccentricity. Hermits tend to make their homes deep within forests or among remote hills and rugged mountains, often found in self made cabins or even living in caves. Because they still follow a known Monastic faith or religion, Hermits are generally left to practice their faith without interference. However they will lack the sense of community and the benefits it brings if they are not part of a Monastery.
A Heretic is one of the most hated a reviled outlaw titles for faith classes. These individuals have broken the most sacred doctrines of their faith, choosing to dabble in forbidden powers, or choosing to follow a faith path of their own making. While a Faith class may be able to hide these practices for a time, even maintaining other Titles, once found out they are either immediately branded Heretics or labelled so after a trial of some kind. The most militant orders will then seek to execute the Heretic as an example, while more lenient Orders may simply force the Heretic into exile. While a Heretic may escape the immediate wrath of his former Order, nothing will spare him from the attention of Zealots of the Faith.
Witch or Warlock
A Witch Monk (female) or Warlock Monk (male) is someone who does not follow an known faith of any kind and as such has never joined a Monastic Order, as none would exist that would fit their particular beliefs. Sometimes witches and warlocks will form loosely structured organizations called Covens. These outlaw groups are typically quite small and serve as means for like minded individuals to dabble in powers that they would not be able to on their own. They lack the scope and cohesion of a traditional Religious or faith Order and so remain as a fringe element or gathering of outlaws.
Regardless of whether Witches and Warlocks join a coven or go it alone, they are shunned and often feared by the common folk. Likewise they are prime targets for Zealots of the faith, who would love nothing more than to force a confession our of them. As such Witches and Warlocks are forced to live in hiding or on the outer edges of civilization to avoid persecution and the attention of Witch Hunters.
|Outlaw Title||Qualifications||Rewards & Consequences|
Snorden the Guzzler