Paladins are exemplars of Faith and Honor, holding themselves to an unusually high standard and selflessly working to improve the world around them. Their view of the world, so intimately connected to their own belief system, does not always align with those around them. This can set them at odds with those who choose a different path through life.
Above all, Paladins are upholders and enforcers of the law. If that law is defined by a monarch, they will be found among the staunchest supporters of the crown. However, if that law is defined by their own Paladin Order and sets them against the prevailing laws of the land, they can also be considered rebels, or even villains at times. Even in these rare circumstances, one can usually expect mercy from a Paladin. They do not revel in suffering or destruction, but wish in all things for order to prevail. This should never be mistaken for weakness; if a Paladin deems something to be a threat to that order, all notion of mercy disappears. Paladins will stop at nothing to vanquish their foes, often launching prolonged campaigns to eradicate their enemies. When Paladins go on Crusade, even the mighty tremble.
Typical Roles: Tank, Healer, Support/Utility, Melee Damage, Ranged Damage
Damage Types: Physical, Faith (Holy, Demonic, Psionic, Primal)
Class Mechanic:Honor and Faith
Available Races:Dwarf, Human, Centaur
Initial Gold: varies by race from 217.5 to 253.8
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, Leather, Mail
Trainable Armor Proficiency: Plate
Natural Weapon Proficiency: Knives, Swords, Bludgeons (2-handed), Shields
Trainable Weapon Proficiency: Swords (2-handed),Staves
See Equipment section for details. When using a weapon 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.
Class Class Passive: Selfless Resolve
Class Secondary Skill: Commander, Theologian, or Combat Specialist (may select from Sword & Board, Freehand, Great Weapon, Paired Weapon, or Freestyle Specializations)
For Paladin’s there is Honor to be found in the service of others and in the veneration of divine or otherworldly beings. A Paladin’s Honor skills take the form of Oaths, Virtues, and Codes.
No training is required for Oaths and Virtues, as these are a function of the Paladin’s personal and imposed sense of honor. However Code training is typically facilitated by the Order to which the Paladin belongs. There a higher ranking Paladin will act as Mentor and trainer for one of the following Codes of the Paladin:
- Faithsworn (must chose a particular Faithsworn code base don your choice of Faith path: Holy, Hell/Demonic, Primal, Soul/Psionic)
- Leader of Men
- A Power Greater
Paladins cannot learn a previously unknown Code or Code Skill (i.e. putting the first code point into Divine Protection) unless they are taught/instructed by a Mentor (aka Code Trainer) that knows the corresponding skill. If assigning additional code points to an already known code skill, then no trainer is required and the point can be assigned immediately (i.e. increasing the number of code points in Divine Protection from 1 to 2). This represents an Paladin honing their skills rather than actually learning a new skill.
See Learning New Honor Codes and Code Abilities for details.
Paladins 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 written by scholarly sources or long dead heroes from Crusades of old. In many cases a Paladin will revere and honor the sacred scriptures almost to the same extent as the deity or power they represent, defending them with their very life. Regardless of the degree of reverence, these written teachings are 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 choose Faith Path (i.e. if following the Holy Faith, it would contain all Holy Faith powers from all Disciplines)
From this repository, a Paladin can memorize powers for day-to-day use and for use in combat. As the Paladin gains levels they increase their capacity to retain or “know” powers, but this is not the same as actually learning them. For additional details see Learning New Faith Powers.
In order to actually cast any of their powers, a Zealot, Cleric, or Paladin must speak out a memorized scripture or verse while focusing their mind on the desired outcome. This must be paired with a simple but forceful casting gesture, often made with a symbol, relic, idol, or other such device of their faith (see Methods of Casting).
For Paladins, conflict and war are common place. As such they have become adept at exercising their Faith in the powers they serve while in the thick of battle. Many choose to recite battle hymns or shout out words of power that can carry across a battlefield. Many also choose to forge the symbols of their faith into their weapons and armor to make it that much easier to cast whiel in the thick of combat.
Paladins use the following chart for leveling 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). Paladins may choose to specialize their skills in up to one weapon use, one combat style and/or one faith discipline, but can not have more than two specializations in total.
- Max one Weapon Specialist skill (choose from: Knives, Swords, Bludgeons, Staves)
- Max one Combat Specialist skill (choose from: Sword and Board, Freehand, Great Weapon, Paired Weapon, Freestyle, Warder, Mounted)
- Max one Faith Specialist skill (choose from any Discipline associated with your Faith Path)
Paladins gain titles based on their rank and standing within an highly organized and regimented group or society of fellow Paladins, often a branch of a larger religious order or faith organization. While the function of a Paladins Order can vary greatly based on the culture and society where they originate, the basic rules for advancement are the same. Paladins rely on promotion through good standing within the Order and completing honorable quests assigned by their superiors. However if a Paladin truly wishing to climb the ranks within their Order they must eventually participate in a Crusade, a sacred quest or campaign to to route out the enemies of the Faith.
Paladin Orders can vary greatly in size, ranging from a fully fledged and autonomous religious order led by a Grand Marshal, to a smaller military branch of another religious order or Priesthood. When a Paladin Order serves in this capacity it is typically led by a High Templar who is subservient to leadership of the greater order.
The titles awarded by a Paladin Order are as follows:
|Title||Level||Qualifications||Rewards & Consequences|
For those Paladins that willingly choose to exist outside of a Paladin Order or are otherwise prevented by circumstance or misconduct, the only alternative is to take on the title of Hedge Paladin. Though they are shunned, outcast and disrespected by other honor classes, they are not without Honor. In fact, sometimes their own sense of honor is what prevents them from serving an Order that they believe to be corrupt.
Having never sworn an Oath to a Paladin Order or pledged themselves to the service of some other religious order or organization, a Hedge Paladin is forced to live on the outskirts of high society, sleeping “under the hedges” rather than in a Keep or Lord’s Hall. In many cases this is simply because they have as of yet failed to prove themselves worthy. This tends to make Hedge Paladins among the bravest Paladins in the land, though often bordering recklessness in their attempts to prove themselves and win honors for their name.
Hedge Paladins live and fight like any other honor class, following some oath or moral code all their own, or mimicking that of an Order they respect and look up to. Given the opportunity, many Hedge Paladins will pledge themselves to an Order later in life. Some, with enough experience and men to follow them, will even attempt to establish their own Paladin Order.
The Oathbroken are disgraced Paladins who were once part of an honorable Paladin or Religious Order, but have since broken or reneged on their oaths. While some may have legitimate and even honorable reasons for doing so, Oathbroken are universally reviled and despised, treated with even greater contempt than a Hedge Knight, for they willingly gave up that which they once claimed to hold above all.
The most overt example of a broken oath would be a Paladin who willingly chooses to dabble in forbidden powers or who forges their own Faith path. While to some circumventing rules and regulations laid out by your Order may seem worth the disgrace, being Oathbroken has its cost. having demonstrated that your oath means little any Oathbroken Honor class CANNOT use Oaths in combat.
Far most sinister of the Outlaw Paladin titles is the False Sworn. These Paladins belong to an existing Paladin Order while secretly serving another agenda, Lord, deity, or entity, and are often Heretical in nature. The False Sworn use whatever Faith powers suit their purpose, all the while holding the benefits and stations befitting their rank among the peers they have deceived. Ultimately though, if a False Sworn is discovered they immediately become Oathbroken, and are exiled from their Order if not executed on the spot.
|Outlaw Title||Qualifications||Rewards & Consequences|
|Hedge Paladin||Having never sworn an Oath to a specific Paladin Order or other such Religious Order (or having been released from an Oath) upholding the Oaths, Virtues, and Codes that would be typical for their class (such as following a known Faith path)||Gain Tiers and Codes at the minimum level requirement for non-outlawed titles (these may be temporarily revoked upon joining an order) With the exception of command rewards, retain any other title rewards gained prior to becoming a Hedge Paladin|
|Oathbroken||Intentional rejection of the authority of a Paladin or other religious Order breaking of the Oaths that bind you to them (or vice versa) most often a result of using forbidden powers and/or mixing of powers||Gain Tiers and Codes at the minimum level requirement for non-outlawed titles With the exception of command rewards, retain any other title rewards gained prior to becoming Oathbroken can use any Faith powers they choose (except for Opposing Faith Powers) May no longer use Honor Oaths Paladins or other associated Religious Orders will shun you if Oathbroken from using forbidden powers (or mixing of powers), will be pursued by Witch Hunters|
|False Sworn||Belong to an existing Paladin Order while secretly serving another agenda, Lord, diety, or entity, often Heretical in nature (i.e. forbidden powers or mixing of powers)||Gain all rewards at minimum level requirement for non-outlawed titles can use any Faith powers they choose (except for Opposing Faith Powers) if discovered immediately become Oathbroken, exiled or executed by Order and hunted by Witch Hunters|
Paladin play styles vary greatly as they can excel in almost any role. Their heavy armor and array of powerful melee weapon choices makes them naturally suited for front line combat or tanking roles. However they can also use many of their honor and faith abilities to support or heal their allies, which in turn mobilizes their class synergy, Selfless Resolve, giving them the potential to do respectable damage as a ranged caster. What this means is that rather than being pigeon holed into a single role, most Paladins can bring immense versatility to their group by shifting to fit the role most needed for the current situation. That said, they can be built to excel in a particular role as well.
Here are some common ways that Paladins can be built using each of the four basic Faith Paths:
Holy Paladin: Holy Paladins are the archetype of all Paladins and are well suited to most roles. The Holy path contains some of the most potent healing abilities, coupled with a Paladins innate ability to survive or negate damage, this makes them excellent front line healers. By stacking heavily into their Devotion Code they also become extremely reliable. When a big heal means the difference life or death, a high-crit Healing specialized Paladin with the ability to re-roll failed difficulty tests seems to fit the bill.
Dark Paladin: Dark Paladins are rare and belong to secretive and often ancient Orders that exist beyond the knowledge of most institutions. They are dedicated to some dark purpose with unwavering intent. Those that practice Necromancy will often be found in the company of undead Deathknights while those wielding curses and disease may be on a crusade to rid the world of some perceived wrong, wiping out entire civilizations. While they lack the healing potential of their Holy counterparts, they can make some of the most impressive tanks.
Keeper of the Wild: coming soon…
Psi-Knight: coming soon…
Crusader Kal Emdar
Paladin of the Order of the Red Hawk, based out of Red Hawk Keep in the Republic Capital of Telestra, hero of the War of the Twin Terrors, slain in battle with Deathlord Archibald to save his companions and all of Gant, his sacrifice enshrined in the Monument of the Crusader
As Deathlord Archibald stretched a gauntlet clad hand towards the heroes a wave of freezing necromantic power swept towards them. It enveloped the warding angel that had stayed close to Roginn, very nearly destroying it. But it was far worse for Silus. The Halfling Assassin was caught in the wave, and already weakened from trading blows with Archibald’s bone drake mount, his wounded body could not resist the overwhelming chill of the grave. Kal raced forwards to try and push Silus out of the blast of freezing death but came up short. The paladin could do nothing more but watch in horror as Silus’s body shattered into pieces beneath the icy blast. But Kal was not ready to accept the Halfling’s death, nor the fact that he had not been able to reach him in time. The Paladin would have gladly sacrificed his life to save one of his friends and it seemed that this was precisely what Agamedien had anticipated, for the emblem on Kal’s tranilium breastplate began to glow brightly, reaching a brilliant golden crescendo. The angel had called it “Agamedien’s Sacrifice”, a great gift bestowed upon a great hero, but for an unknown price. A moment later Silus’s body reformed, unconscious but otherwise unharmed. Kal smiled as he realized the implication of what had just happened. The centaur paladin looked almost peaceful as frost began to form on his skin, like one who dies knowing he has fulfilled his purpose. A moment later all that remained was Kal’s breastplate, lying amidst a thousand frozen shards that had once been the selfless paladin.
-An excerpt from the War of the Twin Terrors, Chapter 16b: Agamedien’s Burning