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Dark Knight

A knight who uses the power of darkness at its utmost potential. Using the darkest of arts to decimate his foes on the battlefield. Not caring whether you’re good or evil. Seemingly taking blows left and right, whether he is covered in the blood of his enemies or his own, He never seems to stop. The power of the Abyss sating his life.

Role: In battle, dark knights use magicks to infuse their blades with the powers of darkness to strike down their enemies and defend their allies. Most of their abilities involve draining health from enemies.

Alignment: Any

Hit Die: d10

Starting Wealth: 5d6 × 10 gil (average 175 gil.) In addition, each character begins play with an outfit worth 10 gil or less.

Class Skills
The dark knight’s class skills (and the key ability for each skill) are Bluff (Cha), Craft (Int), Disguise (Cha), Handle Animal (Cha), Intimidate (Cha), Knowledge (religion) (Int), Profession (Wis), Ride (Dex), Sense Motive (Wis), Spellcraft (Int), and Stealth (Dex).
Skill Points Per Level: 2 + Int modifier

Table: Dark Knight

LevelBase Attack BonusFort SaveRef SaveWill SaveSpecialMPSpell Level
TypeFullGoodBadGood
1st+1+2+0+2Harm Touch (1d6), Grit Stance, Darkside, Limit Breaks
2nd+2+3+0+3Dark Blessing, Abyssal Arts, First Into Battle
3rd+3+3+1+3Harm Touch (2d6), Defile, Shared Offense
4th+4+4+1+4Abyssal Arts01st
5th+5+4+1+4Harm Touch (3d6), Soul Eater11st
6th+6/+1+5+2+5Defile, Abyssal Arts11st
7th+7+2+5+2+5Harm Touch (4d6), Dark Resilience12nd
8th+8/+3+6+2+6Abyssal Arts32nd
9th+9/+4+6+3+6Harm Touch (5d6), Defile, Last Resort42nd
10th+10/+5+7+3+7Abyssal Arts43rd
11th+11/+6/+1+7+3+7Harm Touch (6d6), Aura of Cowardice73rd
12th+12/+7/+2+8+4+8Defile, Abyssal Arts93rd
13th+13/+8/+3+8+4+8Harm Touch (7d6), Aura of Despair104th
14th+14/+9/+4+9+4+9Abyssal Arts144th
15th+15/+10/+5+9+5+9Harm Touch (8d6), Defile, Shadow Wall174th
16th+16/+11/+6/+1+10+5+10Abyssal Arts194th
17th+17/+12/+7/+2+10+5+10Harm Touch (9d6), Aura of Quietus204th
18th+18/+13/+8/+3+11+6+11Defile, Abyssal Arts244th
19th+19/+14/+9/+4+11+6+11Harm Touch (10d6), Aura of Rage274th
20th+20/+15/+10/+5+12+6+12Dark Champion, Abyssal Arts334th

Class Features

All of the following are class features of the dark knight.

Weapon and Armor Proficiency

Dark Knights are proficient with all simple, martial weapons, and knight swords and with all armor (light, medium, and heavy) and shields (including tower shields).

Limit Breaks (Su)

At 1st level, the dark knight receives the Limit Breaks (Dark Force and Living Dead).

Dark Force (Su): This Limit Break allows the dark knight to use his darkness to protect himself and his allies to reduce harm inflicted. The dark knight and all allies within a 30-ft.-radius of the dark knight take half damage from any source for a duration of 1 round + 1 round per four dark knight levels after 1st. This limit break requires only a swift action.

Living Dead (Su): This Limit Break allows the dark knight’s darkness to consume him and become one with him, not allowing his death to pass. The dark knight may not be dropped below 1 HP unless subject to a critical hit. Even then the attack may only drop him to -1, at this point the dark knight is treated as having the Diehard feat for as long as Living Dead lasts and cannot be hurt again unless subject to another critical attack, therefore finally killing him if the attack would deal enough damage to do so. If the dark knight is not at 1 HP or above when the effect ends, he falls unconscious immediately and must now try to stabilize. This limit break requires a swift action to activate and has a duration of 1 round + 1 round for every four dark knight levels after 1st.

Darkside (Su)

The dark knight conjures up the darkness from the abyss to fuel his power covering him with red malice. He gains a bonus to all attack and damage rolls equal to his Charisma modifier. He also gains spell resistance 10 + half his dark knight level. However, while activating Darkside, he sacrifices hit points equal to his dark knight level, as well as the beginning of each turn he remains in Darkside. While succumbing to Darkside, the dark knight is immune to all healing effects other than from his own abilities or spells. Meaning only the abyssal arts, spells, and syphon strike may restore his hit points while in Darkside, as well as any other character abilities from other classes.

He may activate Darkside as a swift action. Darkside lasts until ended, or the dark knight is at -1 or less, unless he is under the effect of living dead. This may be ended as a free action.

Harm Touch (Su)

At 1st level, a dark knight surrounds his hand with a dark power, causing terrible wounds to open on those he touches. Each day he can use this ability a number of times equal to half his dark knight level + his Charisma modifier. As a touch attack, a dark knight can cause 1d6 points of shadow damage. This amount increases by 1d6 for every two dark knight levels beyond the 1st. Using this ability is a standard action that does not provoke attacks of opportunity. Alternatively, a dark knight can use this power to heal undead creatures, restoring 1d6 hit points for every two levels the dark knight possesses.

Grit Stance (Ex)

At 1st level, the dark knight adopts an aggressive stance which slows his enemies’ ability to advance or retreat and reduces the damage he takes while dealing less damage as well. While the dark knight maintains this stance, opponents treat all squares he threatens as difficult terrain and gains damage reduction 2/-, but also reduces damage he deals out by 2. This bonus and penalty increases by 1 per three dark knight levels after 1st and does not prevent those opponents from charging through his threatened area, however. In addition, whenever the dark knight hits an opponent with an attack of opportunity, that opponent becomes flat-footed until the end of his next turn. Entering and leaving grit stance is a swift action.

Dark Blessing (Su)

At 2nd level, a dark knight applies his Charisma modifier (if positive) as a bonus on all saving throws.

First Into Battle (Su)

At 2nd level, a dark knight can spend 1 use of harm touch to act in the surprise round, even if he is surprised. When the dark knight makes an Initiative check, he gains a bonus to the check equal to his Charisma bonus.

Abyssal Arts (Su)

At 2nd level, while under the effect of Darkside, the dark knight draws on the power of the abyss to utilize a new form of power. The dark knight gains an abyssal art ability at 2nd level and every two dark knight levels thereafter. The dark knight can use abyssal art abilities a number of times per day equal to 3 plus his Charisma modifier.

  • A complete list of abyssal arts can be found here: Abyssal Arts

Shared Offense (Su)

At 3rd level, a dark knight can spend one use of his harm touch ability as a standard action to grant all adjacent allies (including other dark knights) a bonus. At 3rd level, adjacent allies receive a +1 profane bonus to their Attack and Damage rolls. These bonuses last for a number of rounds equal to the dark knight’s Charisma modifier. At 9th level and 15th level, this bonus increases by +1. At 6th level, these bonuses are granted to all allies within 10 feet, and allies that are reduced to fewer than 0 hit points within this area become disabled instead of dying as in Diehard feat. At 12th level, these bonuses are granted to all allies within 15 feet, and allies within this area deal an extra 1d6 points of damage. At 18th level, these bonuses are granted to all allies within 20 feet. These bonuses are cumulative with each other. Allies only benefit from these bonuses while in the listed area.

Defile (Su)

At 3rd level, and every three levels thereafter, a dark knight can select one defile. Each defile adds an effect to the dark knight’s harm touch ability. Whenever the dark knight uses harm touch to deal damage to one target, the target also receives the additional effect from one of the defilements possessed by the dark knight. This choice is made when the touch is used. The target receives a Fortitude save to avoid this defile. If the save is successful, the target takes the damage as normal, but not the effects of the defile. The DC of this save is equal to 10 + half of the dark knight’s level + his Charisma modifier.

At 3rd level, the dark knight can select from the following initial defilements.

  • Blinded: The target receives the Blind status effect for 1 round per level of the dark knight.
  • Fatigued: The target is fatigued.
  • Shaken: The target is shaken for 1 round per level of the dark knight.
  • Sickened: The target is sickened for 1 round per level of the dark knight.

At 6th level, a dark knight adds the following defilements to the list of those that can be selected.

  • Dazed: The target is dazed for 1 round.
  • Diseased: The target receives the Disease status effect for 1 round per level of the dark knight.
  • Imperiled: The target receives the Imperil status effect (to shadow damage) for 1 round per level of the dark knight.
  • Silenced: The target receives the Silence status effect for 1 round per two levels of the dark knight.
  • Staggered: The target is staggered for 1 round per two levels of the dark knight.

At 9th level, a dark knight adds the following defilements to the list of those that can be selected.

  • Cursed: The target receives the Curse status effect for 1 round per level of the dark knight.
  • Exhausted: The target is exhausted. Prerequisite: The dark knight must have the fatigue defile before selecting this defile.
  • Frightened: The target is frightened for 1 round per two levels of the dark knight. Prerequisite: The dark knight must have the shaken defile before selecting this defile.
  • Immobilized: The target receives the Immobilize status effect for 1 round per level of the dark knight.
  • Nauseated: The target is nauseated for 1 round per three levels of the dark knight. Prerequisite: The dark knight must have the sickened defile before selecting this defile.
  • Poisoned: The target receives the Poison status effect for 1 round per level of the dark knight.
  • Slowed: The target receives the Slow status effect for 1 round per two levels of the dark knight.

At 12th level, a dark knight adds the following defilements to the list of those that can be selected.

  • Berserk: The target receives the Berserk status effect for 1 round per two levels of the dark knight.
  • Deafened: The target is deafened for 1 round per level of the dark knight.
  • Disabled: The target receives the Disable status effect for 1 round per three levels of the dark knight.
  • Paralyzed: The target is paralyzed for 1 round.
  • Stunned: The target is stunned for 1 round.
  • Zombie: The target receives the Zombie status effect for 1 round per level of the dark knight.

These abilities are not cumulative. Once a defile is chosen, it can’t be changed.

Spells

Beginning at 4th level, a dark knight gains the ability to cast dark knight spells, which are drawn from the dark knight spell list. A dark knight begins play with 1 1st level dark knight spell of his choice. Each time a character attains a new dark knight level, he gains one spell of his choice to add to his list of spells. The free spell must be of spell levels he can cast. Like most spellcasters, a dark knight can find or purchase scrolls with spells to add to his repertoire. Unlike other spellcasters, a dark knight wearing armor does not affect his spellcasting ability.

To learn or cast a spell, the dark knight must have a Charisma score equal to at least 10 + the spell level (Cha 11 for 1st-level spells, Cha 12 for 2nd-level spells, and so forth). The Difficulty Class for a saving throw against a dark knight’s spell is 10 + the spell level + the dark knight’s Charisma modifier. In addition, a dark knight gains additional MP for having a high attribute (Charisma—see Table: Bonus MP per Day (by Spell Level) on the MP System page).

Through 3rd level, a dark knight has no caster level. At 4th level and higher, his caster level is equal to his dark knight level –3.

Soul Eater (Su)

At 5th level, as a swift action, a dark knight can empower his next blow by giving up some of his life force to win the battle. The dark knight’s first melee attack each round for the duration of this ability deals an extra 5d6 points of shadow damage if it hits, and he takes 10 points of damage each time he makes such an attack, whether or not the attack is successful. While this ability is active, the dark knight is immune to all healing effects other than from his own abilities or spells. This extra damage is not multiplied upon a critical hit. This ability lasts for 1 minute and can be canceled as a free action. The dark knight can use this ability a number of times per day equal to 3 + his Charisma modifier.

Dark Resilience (Ex)

At 7th level, a dark knight gains immunity to Poison, Sap, and Disease status effects.

Last Resort (Ex)

At 9th level, a dark knight reaches for the dark power within himself to imbue himself with greater strength at a cost of defense. While under Last Resort, he gains a +6 morale bonus to Strength and, if he makes a full attack action, gains a single extra attack each round at his highest bonus. (This latter effect is not cumulative with haste or other effects that grant additional attacks.) However, he also takes a –4 penalty to Armor Class. Using this ability requires a swift action and consumes two uses of the dark knight’s harm touch ability. The effects last for 3 rounds plus a number of rounds equal to his Charisma bonus (if any).

Aura of Cowardice (Su)

At 11th level, a dark knight radiates a palpably daunting aura that causes all enemies within 10 feet to take a –4 penalty on saving throws against fear effects. Creatures that are normally immune to fear lose that immunity while within 10 feet of a dark knight with this ability. This ability functions only while the dark knight remains conscious, not if he is unconscious or dead.

Aura of Despair (Su)

At 13th level, enemies within 10 feet of a dark knight take a –2 penalty on all saving throws. This penalty does not stack with the penalty from aura of cowardice. This ability functions only while the dark knight is conscious, not if he is unconscious or dead.

Shadow Wall (Su)

At 15th level, as a swift action, if under the Grit Stance, the dark knight can double the damage reduction and damage penalties up to 3 times per day.

Aura of Quietus (Su)

At 17th level, a dark knight radiates an aura that causes the failure of healing spells, spell-like abilities, and supernatural abilities used to restore enemies within 10 feet of him. This is not an antimagic field, however, and ongoing or passive effects are not affected. Casters can overcome this ability with a successful caster level check versus the dark knight’s level + 11. This ability functions only while the dark knight remains conscious, not if he is unconscious or dead.

Aura of Rage (Su)

At 19th level, a dark knight radiates an aura of anger and rage, causing all enemies within 10 feet to be inflicted with the Berserk status for 1 minute unless they make a Will save (DC 10 + half of dark knight’s level + his Charisma modifier) to negate. Enemies succeeding the saving throw makes them immune to this aura’s effects for 24 hours. This ability functions only while the dark knight remains conscious, not if he is unconscious or dead.

Dark Champion (Su)

At 20th level, the dark knight becomes a conduit for the abyss. When he uses an abyssal art or harm touch to damage a creature, he deals the maximum amount possible. In addition, his Spell Resistance from Darkside increases to 10 plus his dark knight level.

Favored Class Bonuses

Instead of receiving an additional skill rank or hit point whenever they gain a level in a favored class, some races have the option of choosing from a number of other bonuses, depending upon their favored classes. The following options are available to the listed race who have dark knight as their favored class, and unless otherwise stated, the bonus applies each time you select the listed favored class reward.

  • Au Ra: Add +1/6 on attack and damage rolls for Darkside.
  • Dwarf: Add +1/2 hit point to the dark knight’s harm touch ability (whether using it to heal or harm).
  • Elvaan: Add +1/4 to the number of defiles the dark knight can inflict.
  • Galka: Add +1/6 on attack and damage rolls for Darkside.
  • Guado: The dark knight restores +1 hit point on undead targets when using harm touch.
  • Hume: Add +1 to the dark knight’s holy element resistance (maximum +10).
  • Mithra: Add +1/2 hit point to the dark knight’s harm touch ability (whether using it to heal or harm).
  • Moogle: Add +1/2 hit point to the dark knight’s harm touch ability (whether using it to heal or harm).
  • Orc: Add +1/4 to the number of defiles the dark knight can inflict.
  • Quadav: Add +1 to the dark knight’s holy element resistance (maximum +10).
  • Roegadyn: Add +1/6 on attack and damage rolls for Darkside.
  • Ronso: Add +1 to the dark knight’s holy element resistance (maximum +10).
  • Seeq: Add +1/4 to the number of defiles the dark knight can inflict.
  • Tarutaru: Add +1/4 to the number of defiles the dark knight can inflict.

Archetypes