Most Shaolin hail from ascetic monastic orders and lead a life of quiet contemplation, study, and martial training. Excelling in unarmed combat, and supplementing their skills with the power of their Faith, their very body can become an instrument of considerable power. While their unique way of life originates from the High Elves, it has spread to many cultures and faiths. There are always those who wish to lead a simpler life, removed from the stress and opulence of the wider world.
Many Shaolin monasteries provide charitable services to nearby communities in exchange for land and goods, making them regarded favorably in most cultures. Though they typically live a peaceful life removed from society, some Shaolin choose to champion righteous causes that align with their own beliefs. Those fortunate enough to secure an Shaolin ally will reap a multitude of benefits as the Shaolin can fulfill many roles: acting as a healer, supporting allies, confounding foes, and even inflicting harm with considerable competency when the need arises.
Typical Roles: Healer, Support/Utility, Melee Damage, Ranged Damage
Damage Types: Physical, Faith (Holy, Demonic, Psionic, Primal)
Class Mechanic: Faith and Focus
Available Races: High Elf, Wild Elf, Halfling, Human, Half-Elf, Kayden
Initial Gold: varies by race from 99.8 to 152.0
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: Leather
Natural Weapon Proficiency: None
Trainable Weapon Proficiency: Knives, Staves
Class Passive & Secondary Skill
Shaolin 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
- New focus abilities require training unless they are upgrades (i.e. Rank1 Heart Punch -> Rank2 Heart Punch), see Learning New Focus Abilities for details
Specializations are recommended for advanced players only, and are accomplished through the Secondary Skill system (see Specialist Skills). Shaolin may choose to specialize their skills in up to one weapon use, one combat styles and/or one faith discipline, but can not have more than two specializations in total.
- Max one Weapon Specialist skill (choose from: Knives, Staves)
- Max one Combat Specialist skill (choose from: Freehand, Great Weapon, Paired Weapon, Freestyle, Peltast, Warder, Pugilist, Physical Defense)
- Max one Faith Specialist skill (choose from any Discipline associated with your Faith Path)
Shaolin follow a Monastic way of life, living and training in a community of believers. Their Monastic Order dictates a variety of regulations and doctrine that the Shaolin must adhere to if they wish to remain living in the Monastary. Every Monastic Order is different, however most are gender specific, being all all male or all female. Shaolin monasteries tend to be found in remote locations, as they are dedicated to improving oneself and attempting to reach an enlightened state, efforts which require a tranquil environment. Despite having a very inward focus, Shaolin Monasteries still often place an emphasis on serving others, as part of the path to enlightenment.
Shaolin are not permitted to live in a communal house within the Monastery until they reach the title of ‘Monastic’. Once this occurs, they are generally not permitted to leave the Monastery, unless specifically on assignment. For some this restriction becomes unbearable and they choose to break away from their Monastic Order.
The standard Order based title ups for Shaolin are as follows:
|Title||Level||Qualifications||Rewards & Consequences|
|Sectarian||2||profess belief and interest in a known Monastic Faith and lifestyle witnessed by house master or higher||Tier 1 Powers Sacred Text +2 Melee Hit +1 Melee Damage Deep Meditation (passive)|
|Servitor||4||agree to voluntary service & training at a Shaolin monastery must still live outside of the monastic community||Tier 2 Powers +1 to Difficulty roll +2 Melee Hit,|
|Monastic||7||must move into a communal house within a Shaolin monastery||Tier 3 Powers +1 to Difficulty roll +2 Melee Hit +1 Academic Secondary Skill Point|
|House Master||10||must be promoted by the Revered Master must govern a communal house within a Shaolin Monastery||Tier 4 Powers +1 to Difficulty roll +2 Melee Hit Harness Chi (passive) authority over a Communal House of Shaolin|
|Revered Master||13||must be appointed by the previous Revered Master must preside over services within a Shaolin Monastery||Tier 5 Powers +2 Focus ability pts +1 to Difficulty roll +2 Melee Hit authority over a Shaolin Monastery|
|Transcendent Master||17||appoint a new Revered Master to replace you dedicate the remainder of your life to meditation||Tier 6 Powers +3 Focus ability pts +1 to Difficulty roll must spend the majority of you life in meditation only breaking from it when specifically instructed to by the power(s) you serve|
A Wanderer is a Shaolin who has rejected the Monastic lifestyle and chosen to live in the outside world rather than cloistered behind the walls of a Monastery. In most other regards they appear as a typical Shaolin, adhering to the orthodoxy and creed of a known Faith, but seeking enlightenment on their own terms or beyond the reach of any strict authority. While some Monastic Orders will attempt to bring Wanderers into the fold, they are most often left to themselves so long as they keep a low profile.
A Shaolin Hermit 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 Shaolin Witch (female) or Shaolin Warlock Monk (male) is someone who does not follow a 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|
|Wanderer||Refusal or rejection of the Monastic life style (often because they feel called to be out spreading thier faith among the people) still adhering to orthodoxy, doctrine or creed of a particular Monastic Order||Gain Tiers and + to Difficulty Rolls at the minimum level requirement for non-outlawed titles retain any other title rewards gained prior to becoming a Wanderer in some cases retain partial allegiance and/or support of a Monastic Order|
|Hermit||Not part of a Monastic Order, either by choice, ignorance, or having been cast out still intentionally practicing a particular Faith Path in absence of community||Gain Tiers at the minimum level requirement for non-outlawed titles retain any other title rewards gained prior to becoming a Hermit +1 Survival Secondary Skill Point must live in isolation|
|Heretic||Must be labelled as a Heretic (either summarily or after a trial) by an established religious order, priesthood or monastic community for breaking away from their orthodoxy, doctrine or creed, often as a result of being caught using Forbidden powers and/or mixing of powers||Gain Tiers at the minimum level requirement for non-outlawed titles with the exception of positions of governance, retain any other title rewards gained prior to becoming a Heretic can use any Faith powers they choose (except for Opposing Faith Powers) Religious Orders may attempt to exile or execute you will be pursued by Witch Hunters|
|Witch/Warlock||Follow a Faith Path of your own making usually including forbidden and/or mixing of powers can be completely independent or may join a Coven of like minded individuals||Gain Tiers at the minimum level requirement for non-outlawed titles with the exception of positions of governance, retain any other title rewards gained prior to becoming a Witch or Warlock forced to live in hiding or on fringes of civilization to avoid persecution and the attention of Witch Hunters|
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